In june, Roe sues Wade was overturned, effectively ending federal abortion rights—a decision that would have far-reaching implications for access to abortion in 2022 (and beyond). In a majority decision of six to three, the Supreme Court decided to leave abortion laws entirely to the state governments. However, many states like Texas have violated reproductive rights with bans as early as the sixth week of pregnancy.
Needless to say, 2022 is a challenging year for reproductive equity and bodily autonomy in the United States. This has also been a historic year marked by protests, organizing and innovative efforts to raise funds for local abortion networks. The battle for reproductive justice isn’t over—in fact, it’s far from over and more important than ever.
Here are some of the things we learned about abortion and reproductive justice throughout the year.
1. Medical abortion and telehealth play a huge role in expanding reproductive care
As we wait together to know the fate of federal abortion rights in early 2022, we took a closer look at medical abortion. In the past, self-administered abortions were generally considered unsafe, but by 2022, telemedicine-prescribed medical abortions for pregnancies under 12 weeks of gestation are quite safe and effective. Medical abortion consists of two drugs: mifepristone and misoprostol. The first type halts and terminates pregnancy hormonally, while the latter initiates cramping and tissue expulsion.
An abortion doula and medical experts have shared what it’s like to take these medications at home and what you may need to do to prepare.
2. Many early abortion bans show things to come
Before the ruling in June, Well + Good reported that Oklahoma had joined Texas and South Carolina in an effort to limit the possibility of abortion in their states. Texas and South Carolina have implemented six-week bans in 2021, but the Oklahoma state legislature has introduced a bill that seeks to ban abortion altogether. The ban heralded what was to come in the summer, and unfortunately, since overturned Roe sues WadeOklahoma, is one of 13 states that have banned abortion outright.
3. A draft opinion piece from SCOTUS has been leaked, confirming concerns that access to abortion is in jeopardy
At the beginning of May, a draft Supreme Court opinion from Judge Clarence Thomas was leaked, which emphasized the court’s intention to make a final decision on the matter. Dobbs Vs. Jackson. The opinion confirmed concerns that federal abortion rights and access were in jeopardy. Although comments were not made, activists reiterated that fish eggs is likely to decline, and efforts should focus on the most vulnerable communities and the oldest reproductive justice institutions, such as local abortion funds.
4. Abortion rights activists discussed the impact of this decision on disadvantaged communities
Before the Supreme Court’s decision, activists were concerned about how losing federal abortion rights would affect disadvantaged communities. Akilah Cadet wrote about the disproportionate impact this would have on Americans.
“The effects of this practice are certainly alarming for all but will be felt to a disproportionate extent by historically excluded communities, such as Blacks, Indigenous Peoples, and Indigenous Peoples. and People of Color (BIPOC); LGBTQ+; and people with disabilities,” she explained. “Remember that women of color are more likely to reside in states with more restrictive abortion laws. And according to 2014 data, 75% of abortion patients have incomes below the federal poverty line or considered low income, income, making abortion costs prohibitive Especially if the abortion—even medically necessary—requires moving across state boundaries, one must first find a means of transportation, which costs time and money.”
5. On June 24, 2022, Roe sues Wade has been officially debunked
As soon as fish eggs reduced, decisions around abortion access are immediately transferred to individual states. According to the Guttmacher Institute, a total of 26 states have laws that prohibit or restrict access to abortion. As of the end of 2022, thirteen states had fully enacted abortion bans.
6. People speak out about why abortion rights are important to them
Protests have broken out across the country in response to this violation of bodily autonomy. Although those with a uterus are most directly affected by this law, Well+Good spoke with various groups of people to share their thoughts, all of whom feel that this level of restriction and Government involvement in private health decisions is unfair to any U.S. citizen.
7. It’s clear that anti-abortion legislators won’t stop at abortion
Well + Good analyzed exactly what lawmakers had to say about contraception, which also seems to be in jeopardy. “This domino effect is not baseless conjecture: In the concurrence of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, he explicitly called on the Court to “reconsider all monies… substantive proceedings, including Griswolds, Lawrence, and Obergefell.” Griswold sues Connecticut protect the right of couples to access contraceptives”.
Essentially, right-wing legislators could end up making a case against accessing contraceptives, such as the morning-after pill. However, knowing this is on the agenda would be helpful for lawmakers to reaffirm contraceptive protections and help activists fight back.
8. Abortion is on the 2022 midterm election ballot
Now that abortion rights are in the hands of the states, the 2022 midterm elections prove important to strengthen abortion rights in some states. In some good reproductive justice news in 2022, every state with abortion on the ballot voted in favor of reproductive rights. California, Kentucky, Vermont, Michigan, and Montana (and the voters of each of these states) voted in favor of legislation in favor of or against anti-abortion bills.
9. Abortion still exists and there are many people fighting to protect it
To wrap up 2022, Well + Good spoke with an abortion doula about what assisted reproductive care should be like no matter what state you’re in (and the restrictions there). Abortion network representatives talked about how you can connect with resources near you, and one abortion doula demonstrated exactly what they do to support people who want an abortion.
Yes, access to abortion in 2022 has become very difficult for many, and the future of access to abortion is bleak and tense at best. The good news is that there are still many people and organizations working tirelessly to help those in need of abortion—and fighting hard to protect our existing rights.