As the Supreme Court prepares to decide June Medical Services v. Russo, the first abortion case of the Kavanaugh era, the fight for reproductive health, rights, and justice is now more important than ever. Should the Court disregard its own precedent set in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt and uphold a Louisiana Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers (TRAP) law forcing providers to obtain admitting privileges at local hospitals, it will signal that states are free to legislate abortion rights out of existence. Since 2011, state lawmakers have passed nearly 450 restrictions constraining access to safe and legal abortion. What’s more, 58 abortion restrictions were signed into law in 2019, pushing basic health care out of reach for those living in poverty and in rural areas, people of color, LGBTQ people, and young people across the nation.
The Women’s Health Protection Act — reintroduced on May 23, 2019, by Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) — would put an end to TRAP laws and unconstitutional abortion bans, guaranteeing providers the right to deliver carefree from these medically unnecessary restrictions. Significantly, this critical legislation also establishes a new test for courts to apply when considering whether a requirement impedes access to abortion services in violation of WHPA. Lawmakers on the House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Health recognized the vital importance of this bill by holding the first proactive hearing on domestic abortion access legislation in almost 30 years on February 12, 2020.
In the face of uncertainty at the Court, now is the time for your lawmakers to cement their support for every single person’s constitutional right to make their own moral and faith-informed decisions about abortion. Urge your lawmakers to support WHPA today!