The Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA), S 510/HR 1322 is a bill that protects access to safe, legal abortion, regardless where a person lives. This measure was first introduced by Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) in November 2013; it has since been reintroduced in every session of Congress. Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) is a lead cosponsor in the Senate, and Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH) and Rep. Lois Frankel (D-FL) are lead cosponsors in the House of Representatives. Given the surge of medically unnecessary, anti-abortion regulations enacted by states nationwide over the past several years, including those aimed at closing clinics, abortion access now varies greatly by state.
Such barriers fall impact young people, people of color, and individuals without access to wealth the most. WHPA protects a woman’s right to make her own faith-informed decisions about abortion by banning several forms of state restrictions that push abortion out of reach, invalidating regulations that unjustly single out abortion with medically unnecessary restrictions; those which intrude into a person’s health care decisions; restrictions that do not significantly advance women’s health or safety; and those which obstruct abortion access.