Across the nation and here in Appalachia today, the freedom to access abortion care has been severely restricted, and for people in many states made entirely illegal, by the U.S. Supreme Court. This dismantling of fundamental rights to privacy and bodily autonomy will have drastic effects on the working class in our country, as well as opening the doors to overturning, at a minimum, the Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell decisions.
In 2019, Tennessee lawmakers passed House Bill 1029, which will put a near total ban of abortion into place 30 days after today’s Supreme Court opinion. This will make it a felony for doctors to perform abortions in the state, facing 3-15 years in prison.
While an injunction on this law from US District Judge William Campbell is currently being pursued in the courts, we need to take action.
A person who receives an abortion cannot be charged with a crime as the current law is written, and you will not face charges for helping get someone to a neighboring state such as North Carolina, Virginia, Illinois, Maryland or the District of Columbia.
Here are actions you can take today:
1. Support moving the Bristol, TN, clinic across the state line to Bristol, VA, and protect access to abortion in our area: https://www.gofundme.com/f/keep-abortion-safe-and-legal-in-bristol
2. Donate to Mountain Access Brigade, a volunteer-run abortion dula collective and fund that services East Tennessee: https://secure.actblue.com/donate/mountainaccessbrigade
3. Sign up to learn how to protect abortion access through Abortion Access Front—they are doing a training on July 17: https://www.aafront.org/operation-save-abortion
4. Support each other and seek out emotional support from others as you need it. This is a devastating outcome, but we can rise against it. As labor journalist Kim Kelly wrote on Twitter, today, “If we can’t be people, we can at least be a problem.”
Finally, we will leave you with a quote from the statement on this from our national body:
“The leadership of the Democratic Party have proven time and time again that they cannot be depended upon to save us. Despite many opportunities to codify Roe v. Wade into law, the Democrats in Washington failed to act. Nor can we rely on our judicial system to guarantee us civil rights. Now more than ever, we need to build a vibrant, militant, majoritarian socialist movement to defeat Republican minority rule, win legislative power, and build a better world that guarantees healthcare as a human right, including the right to free abortions on demand without apology.”
Join the fight with the Democratic Socialists of America — visit https://protectabortion.org/
Northeast TN DSA
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