Statement from PIH regarding reports of US Supreme Court poised to repeal Roe v Wade

News of a ​draft opinion by the U.S. Supreme Court ​indicating it will strike down Roe v Wade has left us saddened, distressed, and outraged. Unfortunately, the provision of safe abortions has become the latest policy casualty, sacrificed to feed a self-destructive and divisive political strife. Access to safe abortion is an integral part of reproductive health, not a political issue. The right to health care is an inalienable human right, and all aspects of health care should be considered and safeguarded as such.

As clinicians and public health professionals, we know too well that overturning the constitutional protection afforded to all persons by Roe v Wade will not reduce instances of abortion. However, it will indeed reduce instances of safe procedures, leading to unnecessary suffering and loss of life. Most maddening to us at PIH is that this decision will – once again – disproportionally affect those who are systemically marginalized, starting with communities of color and those who struggle to keep their heads above the poverty line. For those communities with whom we should preferentially take sides, an out-of-state visit and out-of-network treatment bills will be an impossible hill to climb.

As a society, we must do better than this. We must remain optimistic that we will see once again a future where every person is guaranteed access to quality and comprehensive reproductive care. We must not stop advocating for that future on behalf of those who have been let down by a system that promotes injustice over equity and human rights. ​We join the chorus of organizations around the country calling on U.S. lawmakers to codify access to abortion into law.

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