Earlier today, the US Supreme Court issued decisions in two cases challenging Senate Bill 8, the Texas abortion ban that has been in place for 100 days.
- The Court declined to rule on the Department of Justice’s challenge to SB8. Instead, they sent it back to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, which has already lifted emergency relief blocking the law allowing it to go into effect.
- It allowed the challenge from abortion providers and other to proceed, but only against a narrow set of defendants.
- SB8 is still in effect. The Biden Administration request to block the law and the request from advocates and providers was denied.
What does this mean?
Well while the Court did not put a complete end to the lawsuit, it failed to block the law, including the bounty-hunting scheme where anyone who helps someone get an abortion may be sued. That means other states are likely to copy this discriminatory and draconian attack on the right to abortion – in fact, several states have already introduced their own version. Providers and advocates in Texas and across the country will continue to fight this law in the courts and work to restore abortion access in Texas and for every person who needs – or wants care.
- ACTION: One thing you can do that will make a big difference is to donate to the abortion funds in Texas who are working hard to help people who need to travel to get an abortion.
Today’s decision further confirms the dire threat to abortion access and rights in this country – and the need to get and stay organized. We know that Roe is crucial, but it’s not sufficient to ensure that abortion is accessible and affordable in the U.S.
We need Congress to protect abortion access from coverage restrictions—like the Hyde Amendment, which denies health coverage in federal insurance programs. We also need to address the state-level abortion bans and restrictions that have made abortion care harder and harder to access, especially for people of color and people having difficulty making ends meet. That means calling on our state lawmakers to take action to pass our bill – the Equality in Abortion Coverage Act (EACA).
We will be in touch with more information about how to help in this important campaign. You can hear more at our “Community Conversation” on Sunday, December 12th.This is a great way to hear updates and reconnect.
ACTION: Want to help pass our state bill? Mark your calendar for Tuesday, January 22nd and be ready to speak out with us on the FIRST day of the 2022 Rhode Island General Assembly. We have several actions in process to kick off the new legislative session. More soon!
Together, we will continue to make an impact in the fight for abortion access and push for positive change!