WASHINGTON — With last week’s decision by the government of Israel to expand women’s access to abortion by making abortion pills more available and changing the requirements that women seeking the procedure appear before a special committee: National Council of Jewish Women CEO Sheila Katz released the following statement:
“We are grateful to the government of Israel for moving to honor women’s bodily autonomy by making abortion more accessible in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which will rob over 36 million Americans of control over their bodies and their lives by legalizing state abortion bans.”
“Israel has moved in the opposite direction of the United States, voting in large majority to make abortion pills available through its universal health care system, and to exempt most women from appearing before the termination committee that Israelis seeking an abortion have had to consult in person. Abortion access is a Jewish value. Judaism is consistent in its attitude toward abortion — it permits abortion and sometimes requires it when the life and health of the pregnant person is at risk. To see Israel lead the way in this moment is a bright spot in a very dark time.”
“Certainly, we hope that in the future the Jewish state decommissions the panel altogether, but we rejoice in the opportunity to praise Israel for taking a big step forward at a time when the United States is falling behind. We hope that other countries, including ours, take notice at a time when Israel is living up to its historical aspiration of serving as a light unto the nations.”
National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) is a grassroots organization of 200,000 volunteers and advocates who turn progressive ideals into action. Inspired by Jewish values, NCJW strives for social justice by improving the quality of life for women, children, and families and by safeguarding individual rights and freedoms. Through a program of education, community service, and advocacy, our advocates across the country create lasting social change on our key issues of the federal courts; reproductive health, rights, and justice, and voter engagement. More information on Facebook and on Twitter at @NCJW.