Across the country, we are losing access to abortion. It may be a constitutional right but our ability to exercise that right is shrinking every day. It is linked deeply to your socio-economic status, your geography, and your race. 85% of counties nationwide don’t have an abortion clinic. How did we get here?
Abortion providers have been very effectively marginalized. One of the most detrimental limitations on abortion access currently is the “admitting priviliges” requirement. This seemingly benign requirement requires abortion providers to have admitting privileges at a local hospital. This requirement is constructed to limit access by moving the conversation out of the public sphere. Hospitals have no obligation or requirement to permit access. And in a risk adverse world, hospitals generally are opting away from the “controversial” topic of abortion.
We’ve lost track of the fact that abortion is healthcare. Abortion is a part of a broad spectrum of reproductive and family health. Abortion has been pushed aside into special clinics, and is treated as some sort of dirty word. When we know 1 in 3 women will have an abortion in her lifetime, this is completely absurd. Abortion is common, safe, and a constitutionally protected right.
Anti-abortion activists have successfully discouraged hospitals from supporting abortion providers. Medical professionals protect themselves by not getting involved in the debate – the punishment rained down from activists is too heavy.
This is our fault. We have let down our abortion providers, and let down our communities. When we are embarrassed to talk about abortion, we let that stigma damage our communities and our families.
Join us in our letter writing campaign to let all our medical providers – doctors, practices, labs, and hospitals – know how we feel about abortion. Let them know that abortion access IS supported in their communities – and that in this age of the informed consumer, we can choose to support practices who will work to support abortion access. Abortion is Healthcare.