Abortion rights advocates rally in support of abortion pill access : NPR
Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images
Abortion rights supporters across the country and in the nation’s capital are holding demonstrations Saturday and Sunday against the decision by a Texas judge to reverse the FDA’s approval of ‘ main abortion drug.
Portions of US District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk’s nationwide injunction blocking the approval of mifepristone would have gone into effect Saturday if the Supreme Court had not stayed the decision Friday afternoon .
So far nothing has changed, and it is not clear which states will be covered by the sentence if the Supreme Court refuses to block it after this coming Wednesday, when the current stay expires.
On the steps of the Supreme Court on Saturday during a rally organized by Planned Parenthood, doctors and patients expressed anger at the decision and shared their experiences with abortion as counterprotesters continuously shouted “abortion is murder. “
“These judges are not doctors and neither are they,” said Laura Meyers, CEO of Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington, during the rally, pointing to the anti-abortion rights protesters in the near
Medication abortions now account for more than half of abortions in the United States, making them increasingly the focus of the legal fight over abortion rights. They are also more discreet and affordable than other forms of abortion.
Several doctors who spoke in Washington said that medical professionals cannot provide high-quality, evidence-based care where abortion restrictions are in place. Dr. Divya Shenoy, director of primary care at Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington, called the move to ban mifepristone “antithetical to my medical practice.”
“My patients should be able to receive the highest standard of care without stigma or judgment or judges without medical training telling them the type of health care they can or cannot receive,” Shenoy added.
Brittany House, a patient advocate who is pursuing a master’s degree in public health, said that her medication abortion several years ago allowed her to build the life and career she wanted and get out of an abusive relationship. Mifepristone was part of “the best treatment for my 21-year-old body, mind and spirit,” she said.
House said states with abortion bans have worse health outcomes for Black mothers and babies, and said Black, Native and Latino communities are “by far the most at risk with -elimination of the safest form of abortion care.”
Other protests in support of access to mifepristone and abortion rights took place across the country on Saturday, including in South Dakota, Texas, Chicago and Florida. More is expected on Sunday.