In a landmark decision, the United States Supreme Court voted to overturn Roe v. Wade. This move will undoubtedly affect many women and pregnant people in states where abortion is now illegal. As if abortion wasn’t an already difficult process, obtaining one will be even more challenging.
What Is Roe v. Wade?
Roe v. Wade is a federal decision that upholds a woman’s right to abortion. Fueled by a case involving Norma McCorvey in 1969. McCorvey wanted to have an abortion but couldn’t due to a Texas law that named abortion illegal unless life-threatening. So she took to the courts to dispute the law, calling it an “unconstitutional” invasion of privacy. The courts acted in her favor, granting her access to abortion and agreeing that the law was unconstitutional. Later in 1973, the Supreme Court would follow suit to make abortion a legal right for women nationwide.
What Happens When Abortion Access Is Not Readily Available?
Before the law allowed for legal abortion, those with unwanted pregnancies found ways to abort illegally. Most times, these methods were not only harmful but life-threatening. Many women lost their lives trying to abort their pregnancies by drinking alcohol excessively, throwing themselves down flights of stairs, consuming toxic tinctures, and undergoing botched procedures.
Some sympathetic medical personnel would rent living spaces called abortion rings to perform illegal abortions on women as well. The threat of being caught and imprisoned, however, was always there.
How Can I Get Support?
Now that abortion has been made illegal in several states, many are wondering how this will affect them and the entire country going forward. If you’re in a state where abortion is illegal, you may feel overwhelmed with fear and anger. Fortunately, there are organizations focused on helping women and pregnant people gain access to safe abortions. Here are five organizations to check out if you or someone you know needs abortion support now:
For many women, traveling to get an abortion isn’t just challenging; it’s impossible. From issues with childcare to taking time off from work, gaining access to an abortion clinic is certainly not easy. Fortunately, visiting a doctor or health facility to get an abortion isn’t the only option.
Plan C is a project under the National Women’s Health Network that helps women in need find abortion pills. Their Plan C Guide is a helpful resource that provides women with a directory of clinics mailing out abortion pills. In addition, the guide can provide details about available clinics based on your state, abortion pill costs, delivery times, financial aid, and acceptable forms of insurance.
Women’s Reproductive Rights Assistance Project
Women’s Reproductive Rights Assistance Project, or WRRAP, is the largest national nonprofit organization providing financial assistance to women needing an abortion or emergency contraceptives. They provide funding to hospitals and health clinics that have been thoroughly evaluated and approved as safe for women to receive urgent care.
If you don’t need services but would like to help, there are ways to get involved. First, you can donate to the organization through its official website. Aside from donating, there are other ways to volunteer, including administrative, fundraising, the volunteer hotline, and more. Finally, if you can’t volunteer in person, you can still be part of the cause by writing encouraging letters to vulnerable women in need.
The Brigid Alliance
Aside from the cost of the actual procedure, there are many other challenges women face when trying to obtain an abortion. Travel costs and logistics are typically at the top of the list. Unfortunately, the overturning of Roe v. Wade will present even more challenges for women in states where abortion is illegal.
The Brigid Alliance is a referral-based service that helps women throughout the entire abortion process, from start to finish. They help with transportation by booking and paying for women to gain access to a reputable hospital or clinic. Other services include free lodging, childcare assistance, and emotional support.
Women On Web
Women on Web is a helpful online resource that provides women with access to safe abortion and contraceptive services. There, women can receive help from a team of experts, including doctors, researchers, and other trained professionals.
If you need abortion services, you can schedule a virtual consultation to explore your options with a medical professional. They also offer translation services in 22 languages to help women and pregnant people of different cultural backgrounds.
Their pregnancy calculator can help those in states with strict abortion laws ensure they’re meeting the critical deadlines to obtain an abortion. Other services they provide include informative books, articles, and other documents related to abortion, access to abortion pills, and help with how to take abortion pills safely.
National Abortion Federation
The National Abortion Federation is an organization that provides funding and support to abortion providers across the nation. They offer training, learning modules, and other educational resources to medical professionals so they can administer care safely and effectively. Other services they provide to professionals include onsite security assessments, technical assistance, and patient referrals.
They also provide aid to those who seek abortions. Their support hotline is a safe space where women can speak with a trained professional who can support them on their journey. They also provide a directory for women to find health facilities and providers who perform safe abortions in their area.