MFP Statement on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization
Today in its decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the U.S. Supreme Court voted to erode civil rights instead of advancing them. This is a dark moment in our history.
By voting to overturn its own precedent set by Roe v. Wade in 1973, the Court is denying people their reproductive freedom and fundamental human right to self-determination. Right now in Maine, these rights are recognized and protected at the state level by the Reproductive Privacy Act, and Maine Family Planning will continue to provide accessible abortion care options to all patients in Maine as part of our comprehensive sexual and reproductive health care services. Abortion is essential reproductive health care.
The Reproductive Privacy Act is only as strong as the representatives we send to protect it. We need to elect politicians who understand, respect, and publicly support our right to privacy in the most personal choices of our lives. In the 1972 Eisenstadt v. Baird decision that expanded birth control access to single individuals, Justice William J. Brennan, Jr. wrote that, “If the right of privacy means anything, it is the right of the individual, married or single, to be free from unwarranted governmental intrusion into matters so fundamentally affecting a person as the decision whether to bear or beget a child.” Maine voters have consistently sided with that sentiment.
“Most people in Maine and across the country support the right to access safe, legal abortion,” says George Hill, Maine Family Planning president and CEO. “What the Supreme Court has done—taking federal protection for reproductive rights away from millions of people across the country—is abhorrent. Maine Family Planning will fight with everything we’ve got to prevent these extremist views from taking hold here in Maine, and we will fight for national policies that go beyond Roe in terms of making access to abortion a reality for all people who need it.”
The unrelenting attacks on abortion rights go hand-in-hand with attacks on gender-affirming care for trans people and comprehensive sexuality education for youth. This decision from SCOTUS reflects a win for the long campaign conducted by conservative individuals and groups who seek to keep power within the confines of a patriarchal, cis-heteronormative, white supremacist social structure that discriminates against anything and anyone that doesn’t fit within those confines. We will continue to work towards a future that centers people who have been and continue to be harmed by this social structure, including poor people, young people, LGBTQIA+ people, and Black, Indigenous, and other people of color.
Maine Family Planning stands in solidarity with the two other public providers of abortion care in the state, Mabel Wadsworth Center in Bangor and Planned Parenthood of Northern New England in southern Maine, as well as our state’s sole abortion fund, SAFE Maine. We encourage everyone to stand with us and get involved with protecting access to sexual and reproductive rights and health care in our state. And vote like our lives depend on it in November. Because they do.