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Marcela’s Voice: May’s Letter from the CEO

Like many of you, I too am still grappling with the news of the leaked Supreme Court opinion. Let’s be clear, as of today, Roe v. Wade is still the law of the land. Abortion is legal in the United States. The Supreme Court has not yet made a ruling and until they do, they will hear the voices of Black women loud and strong. Black women are mobilizing across the country and gearing up for the fight of our lives. In Our Own Voice and other Black women’s organizations are mobilizing voters and fighting back.

Black women and birthing people already face barriers to accessing basic health care services and if the Supreme Court overturns Roe, our reproductive health, rights, and safety will be in danger. As Black women, our fight has always been — and continues to be — about the human right to control our body, our work, and our community. A final decision from the Supreme Court banning abortion will not change that.

We know where Black people stand on this issue. In Our Own Voice polling shows that the majority (more than 70%) of Black people believe abortion should remain legal and women should be able to get safe abortions. We also know that the single greatest contributor to persistent poverty among Black women is an unplanned pregnancy. For Black women, Roe has always been the floor, not the ceiling. We will continue to fight for the resources and freedom to choose when and if we have children — and to be able to raise our families with dignity. We will not go back!

The same people who are targeting our right to vote, banning books by Black authors in schools and passing anti-trans and anti-gay legislation are the same people who want to ban abortion. Reproductive rights are Reproductive Justice. Audre Lorde said, “There is no such thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not live single-issue lives.” Our lives, our bodies, and our voices matter.

Attacks on our human rights will always be met with protest and activism. We will not stop until Reproductive Justice is the law of the land.

We are asking Black women’s organizations and Black individuals to join us in sending a strong message to the U.S. Supreme Court and elected officials around the country that Black women and birthing people refuse to allow them to deny our human right to bodily autonomy.

Join us in this fight by signing the Black RJ pledge.

In solidarity,
Marcela Howell
President & CEO
In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda

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