The Spooky State of Abortion Access in America

Photo by Neven Krcmarek on Unsplash

Happy Halloween! There are frights around every corner this month, but one of the scariest things right now is the state of abortion access. This spooky season, you don’t need a horror movie to scare you. Just read on for some scary stats. They’re sure to terrify you into taking action for abortion access.

1. Anti-choice lawmakers in 12 states intend to pursue copycat bans on abortion, using Texas’ SB 8 as a blueprint.
SB 8 is Texas’ draconian, dystopian ban on abortion. It might be a first-of-its-kind ban — but it won’t be the last. SB 8 bans abortion at six weeks of pregnancy — before most people even know they’re pregnant — and it’s enforced by vigilantes who can receive $10,000 by suing anyone who “aids and abets” someone else accessing abortion care. This includes doctors, rideshare drivers, faith leaders, friends, or family. And it’s terrifying.

2. In 2021 alone, state legislators hostile to reproductive freedom have enacted 106 restrictions on abortion access.
This year has been the worst year for abortion access since Roe v. Wade was decided in 1973. With an anti-choice supermajority on the Supreme Court and believing the end of Roe is on the horizon, lawmakers hostile to abortion have launched an all-out attack on reproductive freedom. This cascade of anti-choice legislation underscores the dire threats to reproductive freedom — and it should send shivers down your spine.

3. There are four cases at the Supreme Court right now that threaten abortion access.
On December 1st, the Supreme Court will hear arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a case about a Mississippi abortion ban that’s a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade. To put it plainly, there’s simply no path for the Supreme Court to uphold the Mississippi ban without overturning Roe. But that’s not all — the Court is hearing oral arguments on November 1st in two cases about Texas’ vigilante-enforced ban on abortion, United States v. Texas and Whole Woman’s Health v. Jackson. The Court also heard oral arguments on October 12th in Cameron v. EMW Women’s Surgical Center, a case that will decide whether anti-choice Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron can step in at the last minute to try to revive an unconstitutional ban on abortion in Kentucky. With an anti-choice supermajority on the Supreme Court, the threat is very real and very scary.

4. There are 12 states that have “trigger bans” on abortion.
Trigger bans are bans on abortion that would automatically go into effect if Roe is overturned. And with the Supreme Court set to hear oral arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization in December, the frightening fate of abortion access in those 12 states is on all of our minds.

5. There are six justices on the Supreme Court who are openly hostile to reproductive freedom.
Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Clarence Thomas, Amy Coney Barrett, Samuel Alito, Brett Kavanaugh, and Neil Gorsuch are all openly hostile to reproductive freedom. Soon, they will hear a direct challenge to Roe, and there is no doubt that the constitutional right to abortion is on the line. There’s nothing scarier than that.

With reproductive freedom on the line like never before, we need our leaders in the U.S. Senate to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA) and protect the right to abortion throughout the United States. Anti-choice extremists are directly challenging Roe and using disinformation to try and restrict our reproductive freedom. They must be stopped. WHPA can help protect us from the anti-choice movement’s horrifying vision by safeguarding the right to abortion across the country.

Join us in the fight for abortion rights and access. Tell your Senator to vote ‘Yes’ on WHPA so that we can ensure reproductive freedom is for every body.

NARAL Pro-Choice America is fighting for reproductive freedom for every body.