Supreme Court’s Expected Rollback of Abortion Rights Will Create Humanitarian and Public Health Crisis in the United States; Inspire Anti-Abortion Forces Worldwide
Global Health Advocates Say Abortion is Health Care and a Human Right; the United States Is Backsliding at a Time When the World Is Seeking to Expand Abortion Access
In reaction to the leaked Supreme Court opinion reversing federal protections for abortion, Nabeeha Kazi Hutchins, president and CEO of PAI, an international sexual and reproductive health and rights advocacy organization, issued the following statement:
“A Supreme Court decision reversing federal protections for abortion would create a humanitarian and public health crisis that would result in millions of women and pregnant people losing access to critical and lifesaving reproductive services. This will not reduce the number of people seeking abortions — it just means that more people will be harmed or die in the process of getting them.
Make no mistake — the leaked decision rolling back the precedent established by Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey is a fundamental attack on the civil rights of all Americans. This decision would disproportionately harm Black, Brown and Indigenous communities in the United States and cause havoc for low-income Americans and people in rural areas who already struggle with accessing abortion care.
In addition, because the leaked decision does away with Roe’s fundamental right to privacy, it would mean that access to contraception and protections for the rights of the LGBTQI+ community could be on the chopping block for this radical Supreme Court majority.
The overwhelming current international trajectory is toward the legalization of abortion. From Mexico’s Supreme Court decision that made abortion legal to groundbreaking policy and legal decisions in support of abortion access in Chile, Colombia, Ireland and more, the global trend is to expand sexual and reproductive health care — including abortion — and recognize that abortion is health care and access to it is a fundamental human right . Since the 1990s, over 60 countries have expanded their laws or decriminalized abortion. These rights make families and communities stronger.
Only Poland, El Salvador and Nicaragua have enacted more restrictive laws since then and the United States is about to join them.
The fact that the United States is backsliding on fundamental human rights at a time of such exciting global expansion is deeply concerning. This decision would bolster the anti-abortion movement around the world, derail the progress toward universal access to sexual and reproductive health and rights and violate the agency, autonomy and aspirations of communities across the United States.
PAI recognizes abortion as essential health care and access to abortion as a human right. The United States cannot go back when the rest of the world is moving forward.”
PAI champions policies that put women, youth and at-risk communities in charge of their sexual and reproductive health and rights. We work with policymakers in Washington, D.C., and our network of more than 120 funded partners across 36 countries to remove roadblocks to access sexual and reproductive health services and support. For nearly six decades, PAI has helped communities succeed by upholding their basic rights.