Abortion Toolkit Crisis Action

Crisis Action

USA: Abortion is a Human RighT

Today, tomorrow, and every day we need to show up, join protests, and take action across the nation for the right to abortion.

Tell your two Senators to vote YES on the Women’s Health Protection Act to codify a person’s right to seek an abortion into federal law.

The right to abortion has been under attack since the moment Roe was ruled by the Supreme Court in 1973. While the abortion rights movement has fought at every level to protect our rights, we now find ourselves in this worstcase scenario: on Monday May 3rd, Politico leaked the news that the Supreme Court has voted to overturn both Roe and Casey in their entirety and end the federal right to abortion in the United States. If it holds, the ruling will reverse nearly 40 years of essential protections in the United States of the rights of women, girls, and those who can become pregnant, and is a massive blow to gender equality. Following the official ruling, over half of states are expected to ban abortion totally or neartotally. This is an egregious attack on our human rights!

Access to abortion ensures people have the right to autonomy and privacy; liberty and security; equality, non discrimination, and equal protection; health, life, and in some cases to be free from torture. Denying safe and legal access to abortion jeopardizes all of these rights. While we expect the end of Roe v. Wade, we haven’t lost yet; we still have a window of opportunity and now is the time to seize it! It is our responsibility to step up, show up and defend our human rights.

On Wednesday, the Senate is going to vote on the Women’s Health Protection Act to codify a person’s right to seek an abortion into federal  law. It is our responsibility to step up, show up and defend our human  rights. Tell your Senators to vote YES on a Women’s Health Protection Act!

take action

By each of us doing a small part, we can use the power of collective action to generate a national tidal wave of pressure on our Senators to respect human rights. It won’t be easy, but it IS possible. Amnesty is using all of the tools in its global toolbox, from activism to researchbut we need YOU! Members of Congress are influenced by their constituents, and if they hear that abortion matters to you, they’re more likely to enact policies that will protect our rights to abortion.

It is your life, your health, your body, your sexuality, your identity, and your reproductive life! Together, we can and must defend all of our rights to live free from fear, coercion, violence, or discrimination. Together, we can and must ensure all people enjoy their rights.

  1. Call your two Senators immediately, urging them to protect the right to abortion access by making the WHPA the law of the land.
  2. Send a letter to your two Senators urging them to vote for the Women’s Health Protection Act and to fight for its passage
  3. Flood your two Senators offices with thousands of emails, letters, phone calls, postcards, and faxes and tell them to vote YES on the Women’s Health Protection Act to codify a person’s right to seek an abortion into federal law! You can refer to our talking points below.
  4. Taking a stand on social media tagging your two Senators telling them “Ending the right to #abortion violates the human rights of women, girls, and people who can become pregnant. As your constituent, I urge you [@Senators] to vote YES on the Women’s Health Protection Act”. Please also share content from the @AmnestyUSA accounts and use the hashtag #BansOffOurBodies and #MyBodyMyRights. You can use our Action Graphics here.
  5. Organize or show up at a proabortion rally in your town/city: Demonstrations, protests, marches, and other visible actions are effective at getting attention of the media, which adds to the pressure on our elected officials. We must fight back and work together to protect abortion access all across the country. When organizing or attending such actions, please follow CDC protocols for protecting against COVID19. When organizing or attending actions with clothing or signs that identify you as part of Amnesty International, please use messaging that reads: “The United States must protect the right to abortion”; “Abortion is a human right”; “Always forward, never back: defend the right to abortion in the USA”; “Hold the line: Abortion Rights are Human Rights”. Invite your local media to cover the action and take and post lots of photos and videos on social media using the hashtag #BansOffOurBodies and #MyBodyMyRights and tagging your Senators. Please contact us for help with organizing events, alerting local media or
    any other questions:
    [email protected].
  6. Write a letter to the editor (LTE) or oped in your local paper: These are great ways to uplift human rights in your local media and we have this useful LTE & OpEd Toolkit to make it easy. Please refer to the talking points below for guidance on what to write. If you need help, email us at [email protected].
  7. Get Creative! Share your ideas for creative actions and stunts with us at [email protected].
  8. Let us know the actions you took: Please email us at [email protected] to let us know the actions you took. It’s important to report because we share the total number with the officials we are trying to persuade.

talking points

Main message

  • Access to abortion is a human right. Under international human rights law, everyone has a right to life, a right to health, and a right to be free from violence, discrimination, and torture or other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment. Forcing someone to carry a pregnancy against their will for whatever reason is a violation of those rights. Abortion must be legal, safe and  accessible for all.

General talking points

  • Abortion is a human right
    • Denying safe and legal access to abortion is a dangerous violation of that right
    • Access to abortion ensures people have the right to: autonomy and privacy; liberty and security of person; equality, nondiscrimination and equal protection; and health, life, and in some cases to be free from torture.
  • The United States must not backslide on human rights
    • the US must protect the right to abortion!
    • Stripping protections for the right to abortion is out of step with the rest of the world as sexual and reproductive rights advance.
  • Abortion is essential
    • Abortion is healthcare, abortion is a right
  • The vast majority of Americans77% say the Supreme Court should uphold Roe.
    • The majority of Americans believe the right to abortion should be protected
    • 80% of Americans support legal abortion.
  • If Roe is overturned, as we anticipate it will be:
    • 26 states are certain or likely to fully outlaw abortion (out of 50 states)
      • 12 states automatically fully outlaw abortion, and another 14 have laws waiting to outlaw abortion
        if Roe falls
      • Only 14 states and the District of Columbia have laws protecting the right to abortion
    • We will see a proliferation of Texasstyle abortion bansmany states have already introduced legislation
      just like that waiting for Roe to be overturned.
    • People will still need and seek abortions if they are outlawed people will be forced to travel thousands of miles (if they can afford to) or potentially resort to unsafe means.
  • Access to abortion in the United States is already unequal;
    • and abortion bans disproportionately impact poor and rural women, women of color and minority women, Indigenous women, and transgender and gender nonconforming people who can get pregnant
  • For human rights activists in the U.S., these attacks and abortion bans are not a surprise.
    • There have been constant attacks on the right to abortion since abortion through the first trimester became protected by the Supreme Court in 1973.
    • Every year, multiple states in the USA pass hundreds of laws attacking and limiting sexual and reproductive rights. Most are struck down by the court, until now.

Important note

  • We do not use exclusive “women and girls” language when talking about abortion. Transgender and nonbinary people get pregnant and have abortions, too, and can sometimes have the hardest time accessing nondiscriminatory and genderappropriate care, including abortion care. Using genderexclusive language further marginalizes transgender and nonbinary people, which can lead to further rights abuses against them.

additional information

For more information, please refer to the following Amnesty documents:

May 5, 2022: Media statement: Amnesty International USA Statement in Response to scheduled US Senate vote on Women’s Health Protection Act

May 3, 2022: Media Quote: Supreme Court leaked opinion to overturn abortion rights is an egregious violation of human rights: https://www.amnestyusa.org/pressreleases/supremecourtdecisiontooverturnabortionrightsisanegregiousviolationofhumanrights/

May 3, 2022: Media Quote: If confirmed, US Supreme Court decision could endanger abortion rights around the world https://www.amnestyusa.org/pressreleases/ifconfirmedsupremecourtdecisioncouldendangerabortionrightsaroundtheworld/

Check out our toolkit for activists at the state level: https://www.amnestyusa.org/abortiontoolkit/

Find out more about how abortion is a human right: visit www.amnestyusa.org/abortionrights

IMPORTANT: Until the Roe v Wade ruling is made public, abortions are still legal. You can find an abortion provider here.

If you need help paying for an abortion, go to https://abortionfunds.org/.