SACRAMENTO, CA – Every person should be able to get the reproductive care they choose, including access to abortion care. Our hearts are with the women and girls of Texas who woke up this morning in a state that has stripped them of their rights to safe and accessible reproductive care.
Early today, Senate Bill 8 went into effect in the state of Texas. SB 8 bans abortion after six weeks, before most people know they are pregnant. It also lets private citizens act as the enforcement mechanism by allowing anyone to sue abortion providers and anyone that helps someone get an abortion (including family, doctors, clinic volunteers or even an Uber driver).
We are outraged and horrified that the U.S. Supreme Court has allowed this de-facto ban on abortions and the right to self-determination with regards to medical care to take effect. Abortion is a vital part of reproductive healthcare. It is one of many options that pregnant people have the legal right to choose and it is not the state’s role to choose for them by limiting access.
This law opens individuals to harassment, vigilantism, and overwhelming cost if they attempt or offer support of an attempt, to exercise their right to reproductive freedom. Moreover, by undermining the protections that Roe v. Wade has offered, this decision disproportionately impacts those with limited resources and puts in jeopardy the small safeties that pregnant people have come to rely on nationwide.
Laws criminalizing care and support are dangerous – no matter which state we live in. As other states and the federal government continue to go backward on women’s healthcare, restricting choices and freedoms, in California we have moved forward – removing barriers to reproductive care and providing modern options that increase access to care providers.
In 2019, Governor Newsom signed a Proclamation on Reproductive Freedom reaffirming California’s commitment to protecting women’s reproductive choices. The California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls is honored to be a part of that effort and we remain committed to protecting reproductive freedom for all. The Commission is proud that California continues to lead the nation in protecting every individual’s right to access comprehensive reproductive care.