Statement by NOW President Toni Van Pelt
WASHINGTON, D.C.— When Justice Anthony Kennedy retired from the U. S. Supreme Court, Donald Trump made a deal with religious conservatives. He promised to nominate a fifth vote against abortion rights in return for their continued blind devotion and campaign contributions.
This week, anti-abortion extremists stand to collect. The Court will hear the case of June Medical Services v. Russo—a challenge to a Louisiana law requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. The case is virtually identical to a Texas law the Court struck down in 2016—with the crucial fifth vote cast by Justice Kennedy.
But with Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh on the Court, access to abortion care is on the brink of annihilation. Women are mobilizing to defend Roe at every turn, and around every corner. We are at the Supreme Court today to oppose laws like this, which are medically unnecessary and dangerous as they increase the risk of abortion clinic violence. These laws are designed not to protect women’s health, but rather to expand the power of religious conservatives and other extremists to dictate the most personal health decisions of women.
A wave of hospital mergers are increasingly changing the landscape of community health care from one determined by best medical practices to one set by dogma from the Catholic Church. While the number of secular hospitals fell between 2001 and 2016, the number of Catholic hospitals rose by 22 percent. Many communities of color, underprivileged and lower-income communities only have a Catholic hospital, and for women who can’t travel elsewhere, many kinds of reproductive care are out of reach.
From June Medical Services to the challenge of Catholic hospital mergers, women are mobilizing. Women are marching. Women are speaking out.
Kimberly Hayes, Press Secretary , firstname.lastname@example.org , 202-570-4745