May 6, 2022
At this terrifying time for reproductive rights, I ask, aren’t we fortunate to live in Massachusetts and have the likes of Senator Elizabeth Warren fighting for women’s rights, abortion rights, and many more civil rights for her constituents? Aren’t we fortunate to have our Governor and Sate Representatives Dylan Fernandes and Julian Cyr and their colleagues assuring us that Mass residents will continue to have the right to legal abortions? Aren’t we fortunate that the Family Planning clinic here on island, Health Imperatives, offers medical abortions? Yes, and Friends of Family Planning is committed to “fight like hell” to assure abortion rights are not totally stripped from those who want their freedom of choice. We have to use the safety we have to help others.
I have borrowed lines from various web pages I have been voraciously reading and include my own thoughts within. Many of these action items come from Jesse Mermell of WBUR, and our board members.
If you’re feeling terrified and want to take action, the best thing you can do is donate to an abortion fund: an on-the-ground organization that helps arrange and pay for abortion care for patients who need it. Friends of Family Planning has just such a fund for islanders seeking abortion, and we appreciate all who have generously donated to this fund. There are, however, states with far greater needs of our support. In states where access has been whittled away almost entirely, these funds also help pay for transportation and lodging for patients who must travel hours, sometimes crossing state lines, just to access health care. This website of abortion access funds offers detailed options state by state. https://www.thecut.com/article/donate-abortion-fund-roe-v-wade-how-to-help.html
Although the leaked draft minority decision of the Supreme Court shocked us all and made a reality of our worst fears, this fight doesn’t have to be over. These are dark days, and they will be for some time. But giving up isn’t an option. We must support organizations in the trenches, the ones protecting abortion rights, protecting those who seek and those who provide abortions. https://reprolegaldefensefund.org/ https://reproequitynow.org/
We must make sure that Democrats retain control of the House and Senate in the mid-term elections, and that means every one of us has to donate, volunteer and vote for abortion rights champions. We must elect abortion rights supporters to city halls and state houses because that’s where this struggle will play out for the foreseeable future. We must demand that our elected officials who check the box as “supporting abortion rights” understand that they are being held to a higher standard. This moment calls for full-throated abortion rights advocacy and action. Let’s demand the U.S. Senate passes the Women’s Health Protection Act. And we must insist that any elected official who purports to back abortion rights also backs ending the filibuster and expanding the Supreme Court, or we risk being on the losing end of this battle for decades to come.
This is time for all of us to take action, join groups that are fighting for reproductive rights, not just in Massachusetts but in all states across this country, make donations to funds and candidates that are really supporting abortion access, vote, vote, vote. Elect people who will respect the rights of women and all citizens. This leaked document is not final, maybe a greater call to action than we’ve experienced. I read in several places that the majority of Americans say the Supreme Court should uphold Roe. I have hope that we can continue to make a difference. The fight will be hard and long, but it is on!
Thank you, Terre Young, President Friends of Family Planning.