President Biden’s executive order to defend reproductive rights is welcome, urgent, and necessary—but it’s only a first step. Deliberate and swift implementation of this order is just as crucial.
The President’s order directs federal agencies to make recommendations on how to safeguard and expand access to abortion care, ensure access to emergency care, safeguard patient privacy and protect the physical safety of patients at health clinics, and report back within 30 days.
But on each and every one of those days, women will continue to live in fear, distress and medical danger. And once the Biden Administration puts measures in place to protect women’s rights and access to reproductive health, these steps will only make an incremental difference.
No executive action from the President can restore the protections the Supreme Court has taken away. No speech from the White House can erase what states are doing to ban all abortion, threaten access to contraception, prosecute women and doctors and put more women’s lives in danger.
We need a new Congress that will enact the Women’s Health Protection Act to codify abortion rights and changes in state legislatures to make protecting women’s health a priority. We must continue to use our voice and our power in the midterm elections to elect a new Congress that will value reproductive health and bodily autonomy.
Abortion care is health care, and health care is a human right.
Restore our rights. Protect abortion care.
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The National Organization for Women (NOW) is the nation’s leading membership-based advocacy group dedicated to defending women’s rights, advancing equality and combating injustice in all aspects of social, political and economic life. Through educating, mobilizing, and convening a vast network of grassroots activists across the country, NOW advocates for national, state and local policies that promote an anti-racist and intersectional feminist agenda. Since its founding in 1966, NOW has been on the frontlines of nearly every major advancement for women’s rights and continues to champion progressive values today. More about NOW’s efforts and resources is available at NOW.org.