SEATTLE (June 24, 2022) – Today, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its final decision on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. The opinion, written by Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, is consistent with the draft opinion leaked on May 2, 2022. It overturns the 1973 Roe v. Wade and the 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey decisions, which guaranteed federal constitutional abortion protections.
“We are in an ominous place when the Supreme Court no longer represents the American people – the majority of whom believe in the legal right to abortion,” said Kia Guarino, Executive Director of Pro-Choice Washington. “In the face of the deliberate erosion of our most protective institutions, we cannot give up hope or power. Each of us has the right to speak out and to vote and we must exercise this right even in the context of an imperfect democracy”.
With this final decision, Washington is officially a sanctuary state for abortion rights. However, we cannot be complacent. Guttmacher Institute predicts a 385 percent increase in out-of-state patients seeking abortion care in Washington clinics and hospitals. This will increase pressure on our abortion infrastructure, which already has significant gaps:
- Since the 1990s, more than 60 percent of abortion clinics in the Pacific Northwest have closed because of costs and harassment;
- Nearly 50 percent of hospital beds sit within facilities that restrict access to abortion and other reproductive healthcare – a 26 percent increase over the past 10 years; and
- This is in addition to other barriers, such as high abortion costs, provider bias, and limited availability of reproductive healthcare.
States are now fully responsible for ensuring abortion rights, and Pro-Choice Washington is focused on strengthening abortion access with legislation that protects the right of every person to have an abortion, reduces the costs of abortion care, and improves access to the full range of reproductive healthcare options.
Also, in this November’s general election, we call on all Washingtonians to vote for candidates who unapologetically support abortion. The legal right to abortion in Washington is only protected by the maintenance of a pro-abortion majority in the state legislature. This year, 87 percent of seats are up for re-election and there is a significant increase in far-right candidates across the state.
If you want to join us and help promote and protect reproductive freedom, here are four key actions you can take:
- Donate to local organizations that are helping people access abortion, such as abortion clinics, abortion funds, and grassroots groups like Pro-Choice Washington.
- Write to your representative to let them know that pro-abortion legislation matters to you.
- Put your voting power behind pro-abortion candidates in this November’s general election.
- Educate yourself on abortion-related state policies that will be addressed in the next Washington state legislative session in early 2023.
Pro-Choice Washington is the only organization solely focused on political and legislative advocacy for reproductive freedom in Washington state. We believe every person deserves equitable access to affordable, unbiased, quality reproductive and abortion healthcare within their community. Our organization is powered by the voices of more than 26,000 members across the state who are speaking up for reproductive rights through advocacy, community engagement, and education.