Following the draconian decision by the United States Supreme Court in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the Pennsylvania Commissions for Women, African American, Latino, LGBTQ+, and Asian Pacific American Affairs jointly released a statement reaffirming their commitments to fighting for safe, legal, and accessible abortion in Pennsylvania.
“As a new mother, I am saddened and terrified of the ramifications today’s Supreme Court ruling will have on parents and birthing people across the nation. Abortion bans harm mothers, their babies, and their families. They do not reduce maternal mortality or improve health care outcomes. Abortion bans also negatively impact communities of color, LGBTQ individuals, young people, and low-income households at higher rates,” said Moriah Hathaway, Commission for Women executive director. “Thankfully, abortion will remain safe and legal in our state as long as Governor Wolf has the veto pen.”
“The impending loss of body autonomy – and privacy as a whole — with the overturning of Roe v. Wade has launched protests and marches across our nation,” said Dr. Tyler Titus, member of the Governor’s Advisory Commission on LGTBQ+ Affairs, “With the majority of Americans supporting a person’s right to choose, it is imperative that we lock arms with all who will be impacted by this ruling. As a queer, non-binary person who was assigned female at birth, I am all too familiar with the injustices and inequities within our current healthcare systems. As a person whose body has created life and brought two children into this world, I call on our leaders to stand with all transgender and gender-expansive people. As we fight for our rights and agency over our bodies, we cannot ignore that not all birthing bodies are cisgender. The time for solidarity has never been more evident as now for those who will be most impacted are those of who exist within multiple intersections of identity and ultimately marginalization.”
“As it is, there aren’t enough resources to support women in making educated decisions relating to their bodies and when women do make decisions, they’re shamed. This decision is a selfish ploy to regain political control; it’s unacceptable to politicize women’s reproductive rights and healthcare options. GACLA opposes this decision and will continue to speak up for a woman’s right to choose,” said Dr. Damary Bonilla-Rodriguez, member of the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Latino Affairs.
“The fight for women’s rights has been a long and hurtful journey. This decision takes us back to the initial struggles. As we did before, we will continue the fight. Nothing will stop us!” said María Teresa Donate, Chair of the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Latino Affairs.
“Today’s Supreme Court opinion is beyond disheartening, though women in Pennsylvania will be unaffected by this ruling – for now – thanks to Governor Wolf,” said LaDeshia Maxwell, executive director of the Governor’s Advisory Commission on African American Affairs. “Our commission is committed to ensuring that abortion access remains safe and a right to all who would like it in the commonwealth.”
“It is very sad that the current Supreme Court is so out of touch with the majority opinion of the American people and is trying to drag this country backward in time, to an era where the lives of so many women were lost,” said Stephanie Sun, executive director of the Governor’s Advisory Commission Asian Pacific American Affairs. “Even with this setback, we as a country and as a people must continue to move forward and strive to make this a better place for all people. It is the hope of the Pennsylvania Governor’s Advisory Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs that the voice of the people will be heard through the upcoming elections and the fundamental human rights of women will be restored and expanded throughout this great nation.”
The Commissions will continue to work closely with community stakeholders and Governor Wolf to protect access to health care in Pennsylvania. The Commissions stand with Governor Wolf, who has championed health care access by vetoing three different anti-abortion bills passed by Pennsylvania’s General Assembly and has vowed to continue protecting a woman’s right to choose.