Op-ed: A statement on abortion from the League of Women Voters and other local organizations

The Pueblo Chieftain
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Opinions expressed in letters and op-eds published in The Chieftain are the views of the writers, not this publication.

The four organizations who have signed this letter believe every U.S. resident should have access to affordable, quality health care, including birth control and the privacy to make reproductive choices. As an ally of organizations representing minority populations, as well as reproductive rights organizations, the League or Women Voters knows that safe access to health care, including abortion, is essential to our democracy. 

Not only is the right to a safe and legal abortion a matter of personal freedom, it’s also a major factor in the movements for racial and economic equality. Black women and all underserved communities already experience inequitable barriers and limited access to adequate health care services. They also are more likely to depend on government-funded resources such as Medicaid and SNAP.  Many of the communities targeted with voter suppression are the same ones who will be most impacted if reproductive freedom is also taken away. 

We are concerned for the welfare of children born into difficult circumstances or with serious birth defects whose mothers haven’t the resources to find expensive, neonatal medical solutions.

The foster care system struggles to accommodate present needs. We have no safety nets for it; there are very few assurances that the fathers will take responsibility. How much worse will this system get, if a significant number of unwanted or medically complicated children are added?

Stopping abortions will not stop all abortions. It will stop safe abortions. You, your sisters, your wives, will be injured or worse.

Democracy depends on equal rights for all people. Losing our right to reproductive choice opens the door to the loss of other freedoms like marriage equality, contraception, and the right to engage in private, consensual intimacy. The attack we have seen on voting rights is an attack on democracy. The attack on reproductive choice is a continuation of silencing people in this country.

The League of Women Voters of Pueblo, NAACP Unit 4005, Women’s Suffrage Centennial - Southern Colorado, and the National Association of Hispanic Nurses, Southern Colorado Chapter, stand in solidarity with individuals who may become pregnant. We are in the fight to protect reproductive health together.

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