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Black women leaders call for Reproductive Justice in Texas

Statement by In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda Founder and President Marcela Howell

WASHINGTON — Last night, a federal appeals court overturned a lower court’s ruling that an extreme abortion ban is unconstitutional, thereby clearing the way for the ban to take effect. The law will make the most commonly used procedure for second trimester abortion illegal. In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda Founder and President Marcela Howell issued the following statement in response:

“The federal court’s decision is an unabashed attack on reproductive rights that will endanger the lives and restrict the rights of all women and pregnant people — most especially Black women and women of color. Black women already face barriers to accessing reproductive health care, the kinds of barriers that can delay abortion care until the second trimester. Now, the safest, most common abortion procedure used in the second trimester will be unavailable in Texas.

“Almost as soon as the historic Roe decision was handed down, opponents of reproductive rights began to attack access to abortion. Just a few years after the high court declared access to abortion a women’s right, Congress enacted the Hyde Amendment, separating abortion care from other health care by prohibiting federal funding for those who got their health insurance through the government. Ever since, we have witnessed the continued erosion of our civil right to sovereignty over our own bodies — with yesterday’s decision just the latest blow in the decades-long assault.

“The enemies of reproductive rights and health have made it clear that they will stop at nothing to restrict our human rights, whether it is abortion rights, voting rights, freedom to practice our religion and so much more. The U.S. Supreme Court is poised to revisit its decision on Roe and place additional limits on abortion rights. Black women and all women of color will suffer the most from this unrelenting onslaught on reproductive rights.

“As Black women and pregnant people, our fight has never been about the right to abortion care, it has been about surmounting the federal and state barriers that prevent us from accessing that care. We will continue the fight to ensure that every woman has the resources to make decisions about her own body. We will not stop until Reproductive Justice is the law of the land.”


In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda is a national Reproductive Justice organization focused on lifting up the voices of Black women at the national and regional levels in our ongoing policy fight to secure Reproductive Justice for Black women, femmes, queer, trans and gender non-conforming people, and youth. Our strategic partners include Black Women for Wellness, Black Women’s Health Imperative, New Voices for Reproductive Justice, SisterLove, Inc., SisterReach, SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW, The Afiya Center and Women With A Vision.

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