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Statement on the 2nd Anniversary of the Dobbs Decision Overturning Roe v. Wade

Linda Goler Blount, MPH Dobbs Statement

Today marks the second anniversary of the Dobbs decision that overturned Roe v. Wade, erasing fifty years of reproductive rights critical to the economic wellbeing of families, particularly Black, Latino and Indigenous people and people living with low incomes. At the Black Women’s Health Imperative, we know that this decision has stripped away the ability for many Black women to plan their families, pursue careers, and safeguard their health from the risks associated with unplanned pregnancies and pregnancy complications. 

Our battle to protect women is as urgent as ever. The elimination of abortion rights is not just a limitation on women’s freedom but on maternity care, contraceptive care and, potentially, on important benefits such as paid family leave which nearly 100 percent of adults agree is necessary.

When membranes in her uterus ruptured 16 weeks into her pregnancy, Anya Cook went to the emergency department only to be turned away.  The doctors told her because of Florida’s ban on abortion care, she would have to wait until complications threatened her life. The next morning, she delivered her lifeless daughter, Bunny, and was then rushed to the hospital to receive health care only after, as she described it, “I literally just released my body and blood. Like a pipe that burst in your kitchen, blood – gushing, shooting out.”

Recent polls reveal that the majority of all Americans support access to abortion care. In keeping with this, it is important for us to amplify the many courageous women who choose to share their stories. And it is vital for us to ensure we can make the most basic health care decisions for ourselves and our families. 

As we reflect on this grim anniversary, we must understand that the fight for reproductive rights is intertwined with our civil rights and the fight for justice. Now more than ever we must vote, especially at the state level, where decisions impacting our access to health care are often made. Black women need to be informed about who is making these decisions, their beliefs, their track records, and the sources of their campaign funding. Policy and constitutional protections can still safeguard us, but only if we elect informed, civic-minded lawmakers committed to reproductive justice for all. 

We must advocate for our rights, educate our communities, and vote with the knowledge that our health, our autonomy, and our very futures depend on it.