Statement by the Colorado Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice Coalition on the Abortion Bans Being Passed in the States and Week of Solidarity
With abortion bans being passed in multiple states, members of the Colorado Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice Coalition are collectively issuing the following statement.
Abortion is a constitutional right. In the last 10 years, however, states have passed more than 400 restrictions on access to abortion that disproportionately hurt people who already face systemic barriers to health care: people of color, people with low incomes, and young people. Alabama and Missouri recently passed the most extreme abortion bans in the country, Georgia became the fourth state this year to pass an unconstitutional bill to outlaw abortion at six weeks, before most people even know they’re pregnant, and another 28 states are considering legislation that would restrict or ban abortion altogether.
The politicians behind these bans have been clear about their intentions: these recent bans are a race to reverse Roe v. Wade. Make no mistake – the politicians restricting access to abortion don’t care about pregnant people and families. But patients should know that these bans are not in effect — yet. Abortion is still legal in all 50 states and patients can still make appointments to get the care they need.
These extreme and uncommonly harsh anti-abortion bills are an assault on our human rights — especially the rights of womxn of color and Black womxn — and an affront to the religious convictions and values shared by the many faiths in our coalition by taking away our reproductive freedom. Seeking abortion care is a sacred, holy decision between self, divine, universe, ancestors, and chosen beloveds that should be left to the patient, their families, and their health care providers; not a politcian’s beliefs.
We will continue to strive toward true Reproductive Justice in the state of Colorado and affirm that every individual has the right to decide to have children, the right to decide not to have children and the right for the children that they have to thrive. The Colorado RHRJ Coalition and Reproductive Justice organizations across the nation stand in solidarity with the grassroots organizations on the ground in the affected states and are stepping up to help patients and the local abortion funds supporting them.
We need to stand shoulder to shoulder with the states facing attacks, while also empowering Coloradans with the tools they need to protect our state from these same attacks and protect access to safe, legal abortion care.
The important thing to remember is that abortion is still legal in all 50 states and we intend to make sure it stays that way. We control our bodies and our futures. We will not stand by as lawmakers try to take away not only safe, legal abortion care, but our agency and our bodily autonomy.
The Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice Coalition comprises the ACLU of Colorado, Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights (COLOR), Colorado Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (CO-RCRC), Interfaith Alliance of Colorado, NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado, New Era Colorado, Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains (PPRM), ProgressNow Colorado, and Soul 2 Soul Sisters.
These nine organizations work together to support the full spectrum of reproductive health, rights and justice issues in order to meet the needs of people across Colorado. We are committed to fighting for policies which ensure that the rights and dignity of every Coloradan are protected. And we stand in solidarity with the patients, providers, and advocates in these states fighting to protect their rights.
You can find respective organization’s statements here:
ACLU of Colorado:
“Abortion is a constitutional right. In the last 10 years, however, states have passed more than 400 restrictions on access to abortion that disproportionately hurt people of color, people with low incomes, and young people. Make no mistake – the politicians restricting access to abortion don’t care about pregnant people and families.
Case and point: Georgia has the highest maternal mortality rate and Alabama has one of the highest infant mortality rates in the country. Abortion bans are about controlling pregnant people and taking away our reproductive freedom. The ACLU has already filed lawsuits in KY and OH, is preparing challenges to the GA and AL bans, and will continue to challenge unconstitutional bans in court. Abortion is a constitutional right, and we intend to keep it that way.”
Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights (COLOR):
“Whether it is the latest slew of bans that take abortion care away early in pregnancy or laws that close clinic doors, we know who is impacted most – those who already face systemic barriers to health care. It is women of color and other people living on the margins who are under attack.
“Women of color in the South and across the country are coming together to lead the efforts to fight back and to meet the needs of people in our community as we always have. Reproductive justice organizations are stepping up to fund abortion and connect people with clinics. We control our bodies and our futures. We will not standby as lawmakers try to take away not only safe, legal abortion care, but our agency and our bodily autonomy.”
Interfaith Alliance of Colorado:
“We are in a time, similar to so many times in the past when our communities experience real threats of bigotry, prejudice and the imposition of some beliefs over others. The abortion bans that Alabama, Georgia, and several other states have passed, will disproportionately affect minority communities across the nation and the Interfaith Alliance of Colorado will not stand for that.
We will continue to strive towards true reproductive rights, health, and justice in the state of Colorado and affirm that every individual has the right to decide to have children, the right to decide not to have children and the right for the children that they have, to thrive.”
NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado:
“NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado is in full solidarity with the grassroots organizations on the ground in these states helping patients, and the local abortion funds supporting them. The types of laws passed in Alabama other states have been introduced every year in the Colorado General Assembly, going back nearly a decade. But here, the legislation went much further to define the start of human life at fertilization — and even allow for the death penalty for a doctor who performs an illegal abortion.
We are grateful to see a renewed interest in an issue that we have been fighting for over 40 years, and we know we are in a crisis. The recent bans feel like a race to reverse Roe. The important thing to remember is that abortion is still legal in all 50 states and we intend to make sure it stays that way.
We urge everyone to donate to an abortion fund in the states most impacted and to support their local abortion fund. And one of the most important things we can do is reduce stigma around abortion care – if you have an abortion story, share it.”
New Era Colorado:
“Younger generations are unquestionably in support of communities’ rights to access safe abortion care. By supporting the fights to protect abortion access in these states, we’re also fighting to protect abortion access across the country. We need to show solidarity with other states facing attacks, but also give people in Colorado the tools they need to protect our state from these same attacks and keep our state a safe place for anyone seeking an abortion.
That’s why New Era Colorado and the Brazen Project will be participating in the National Week of Solidarity to Defend Abortion across our social media channels, and working to connect, train and support young people all across the state on June 1st at our Youth Activists For Abortion Access Summit–hosted with COLOR and ACLU of Colorado–to build the network of powerhouse activists we need to defend Colorado against the very kind of attacks we’re seeing all over the country.”
Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains:
“Patients should know that these bans are not in effect — yet. You can still make an appointment at your local health center and get the care you need. We will be fighting them to make sure they never go into effect and doing everything we can to protect our patients’ health and lives.
A patient’s health should drive important medical decisions, not a politician’s beliefs. These issues are between women, their families, and their health care providers.”
Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice:
“This extreme and uncommonly harsh anti-abortion bill is an assault on the human rights of women and an affront to the religious convictions and values shared by the many faiths in our coalition. Our values say each person is created in the image of God with free will to make moral decisions about their bodies, their families, and their lives.
We are people of faith and of no faith, and we demand accountability from our elected officials in protecting religious liberty and bodily autonomy which are our constitutional rights.”
Soul 2 Soul Sisters:
“In the midst of well-funded and coordinated attacks on abortion access, Soul 2 Soul Sisters upholds abortion as a sacred, holy decision between self, divine, universe, ancestors, and chosen beloveds. We work in solidarity with those fighting to maintain abortion access as a healthcare option through the advancement of reproductive justice.”