• Press Release

U.S. Backsliding on Global Gains in Abortion Rights  

September 28, 2021

(Photo by Jim WATSON / AFP) (Photo by JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images)
The past few months have underscored that American’s rights to abortion remain under attack. Earlier this month, S.B. 8 went into effect in Texas, effectively banning abortions as early as six weeks – before many people even know they are pregnant – and privatizing enforcement against abortion providers. Later this year, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in response to a Mississippi legal case that threatens to overturn decades-old abortion protections established under Roe v. Wade.

Today, in response to these developments and in recognition of International Safe Abortion Day, Tarah Demant, Director of Gender, Sexuality and Identity Programs at Amnesty International USA said:

“Prohibiting legal access to abortions does not end abortion; it instead compels pregnant people to seek unsafe abortions, violating their rights and increasing maternal mortality and morbidity. Above all, restrictive policies disproportionately impact marginalized groups – including low-income, minority or Indigenous people and transgender or non-gender conforming individuals – who already face barriers in accessing health care and often lack means to seek safe and legal abortion services elsewhere. We have already seen the ramifications of such draconian legislation – in El Salvador, such policies have effectively amounted to torture, discrimination and denial of pregnant people’s rights.

“While moves to legalize and decriminalize abortion in Argentina and Mexico over the past year are a huge win for the global community, the recent Texas abortion ban and upcoming Mississippi legal case hearing are a grim reminder that the United States is falling behind other nations in its obligation to protect pregnant people’s rights. Amnesty International remains fervent in its calls on the government to protect the right to abortion. Anything less is a failure to uphold human rights, including the right to life, bodily autonomy and dignity.”

Contact: Gabby Arias, [email protected]