ChoiceWords Blog

UPDATED STATEMENT ON ALABAMA’S ANTI-TRANS HEALTHCARE LAWS

Today, URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity celebrates the outcome of the Alabama case, Rev. Eknes-Tucker v. Marshall, as a step to protect transgender and non-binary young people in exercising their bodily autonomy in health care decisions. The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama, Northern Division, held that a portion of the anti-trans healthcare law that passed in Alabama last month cannot stand. The sections that would criminalize doctors for providing gender-affirming healthcare to trans and non-binary youth in Alabama have been enjoined by the courts and are not currently being legally enforced. Harmful sections of the law remain in effect, including provisions that require teachers and school personnel to notify legal guardians of a child’s gender dysphoria or face criminal charges. Other laws targeting trans… Read more »

URGE RESPONDS TO LEAKED SCOTUS OPINION OVERTURNING ROE V. WADE

On Monday, May 2, 2022, POLITICO shared a leaked draft majority opinion for the upcoming Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization Supreme Court case, revealing that Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey will likely be overturned. This decision would effectively ban abortion in many states across the country. While the leaked draft is not a final opinion, it has been confirmed by Chief Justice Roberts to be an authentic draft opinion from Justice Alito.  Simply put, if the Court moves forward with this ruling, it will be devastating for young people, communities of color, and people who need abortions and will change the reality of abortion access for millions of Americans. As we wait to hear about the fate of  nearly 50-years of precedent, URGE: Unite for Reproductive… Read more »

URGE CELEBRATES CONFIRMATION OF JUSTICE KETANJI BROWN JACKSON AS THE FIRST BLACK WOMAN TO SERVE ON THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

WASHINGTON – Today, URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity celebrates the confirmation of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, making her the first Black woman to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States with a 53-47 vote. Over the past several weeks, the world has learned about Jackson’s extraordinary qualifications, character, and values. With her diverse experience, we are confident that she will bring tremendous knowledge and much needed fresh insight to the Court. Since President Biden announced her nomination, we have been heartened by the outpouring of support for Jackson from individuals and organizations across the country.  “This nomination is a monumental day in the history of the United States. Despite partisan attacks riddled in misogynoir, our next Associate Justice has overcome yet another hurdle that the legal… Read more »

URGE RESPONDS TO SENATE’S FAILURE TO PASS THE WOMEN’S HEALTH PROTECTION ACT

WASHINGTON – Today, in a 46-48 vote the U.S. Senate refused to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA). URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity is disappointed by the Senate’s vote on this necessary legislation that would move us one step closer to real abortion access for all.  WHPA is bold federal legislation that creates a statutory right for healthcare providers to provide abortion care, and a corresponding right for their patients to receive that care, free from medically unnecessary restrictions that single out abortion and impede access. At a time when states like Texas and Mississippi have launched attacks on Reproductive Justice, it is critical that the federal government steps in to defend abortion care across our nation.  Yet, despite these consistent and dangerous attacks on abortion, many politicians… Read more »

URGE ENDORSES JUDGE KETANJI BROWN JACKSON AS THE FIRST BLACK WOMAN NOMINATED FOR APPOINTMENT TO THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

WASHINGTON – Today, President Joe Biden nominated Ketanji Brown Jackson as the first Black woman nominee to the Supreme Court. After careful consideration of her qualifications, URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity is pleased to support Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson as our next Supreme Court Justice. We applaud President Biden for fulfilling his commitment to nominate a Black woman to this vacancy and we are confident that Judge Jackson will excel as a Justice and will make the Court a better representation of the demographics of our nation.  We encourage the Senate Judiciary Committee to ensure a fair and timely confirmation process.  We trust that after Senators review Judge Jackson’s outstanding record, there will be a prompt confirmation vote with bipartisan support. “As the next Supreme Court Justice, we… Read more »

URGE Marks 49th Anniversary of Roe v. Wade with Young People’s Roundtable as Fate of the Landmark 1973 SCOTUS Ruling Hangs in Balance

MEDIA ADVISORY WHO: Event hosted by URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity. Students from Kansas, Ohio, Georgia, Alabama, and California.   Moderators:  Cindy Cruz (she/her/ella), Western States Director  Desiree Luckey (she/her/hers), Director of Policy  Collegiate Panelists:  Jordan Barrant (she/hers) – Chapter President, URGE Spelman  Delaney Jones (she/her) – Executive Chair, URGE Wichita State University (Feminists on Campus Uniting Students)  Ursula Justice (they/them) – Chapter Leader, URGE University of Alabama Huntsville  Z Zenobia (they/them) – Humboldt State Univ. Representative, Pro-Abortion Student Advisory Board  Maria Renteria (she/they) – Former Canvasser, URGE Ohio WHAT: URGE and student panelists from several of our investment states will host Growing Up With Roe, Going Beyond It: A Young People’s Roundtable to explore the complexities surrounding the landmark 1973 U.S. Supreme Court ruling identifying abortion as a… Read more »

URGE Remembers Darshan Khalsa, Immediate Past Board Chair and Previous Staffer – “An Absolute Force” 

Today we remember the life and legacy of a beloved member of the URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity community, Darshan Khalsa (she/her), who passed away December 13, 2021.  Darshan’s history with URGE ran deep. She was a member of URGE’s Board of Directors for six years (2014 – 2020), culminating in her service as Board Chair. From 2008 – 2011, under URGE’s previous name – Choice USA, Darshan was on staff as Deputy Director. Her contributions to building URGE and supporting our staff, Board, and members past and present are significant. Simply put, URGE would not exist without her leadership. She helped keep URGE stable and solvent during the 2008 recession when non-profits large and small were closing all over the country. She also oversaw a successful executive transition and URGE’s significant surge in growth during her tenure as Board Chair. But beyond these measurable successes, Darshan’s sly sense of humor, thoughtful justice analysis, and kind and open heart will be what many… Read more »

URGE DEMANDS IMMEDIATE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE IN THE WAKE OF SCOTUS DECISIONS ON WHOLE WOMEN’S HEALTH V. JACKSON & UNITED STATES V. TEXAS

Today, the Supreme Court issued decisions in Whole Women’s Health v. Jackson and the United States v. Texas – lawsuits brought by abortion providers and the Department of Justice, respectively, challenging Texas’ unconstitutional Senate Bill 8, or S.B. 8. While the Supreme Court allowed abortion providers to move forward in their fight against the abortion ban on narrow grounds, the law remains in place and access to abortion continues to be limited in Texas. This Supreme Court, stacked with conservative justices appointed with the singular goal of ending abortion, continues to sanction the bounty-hunting scheme that attacks abortion access, undermines bodily autonomy, and creates fear in Texans and across the country.  S.B. 8 took effect 100 days ago, annihilating abortion access in Texas. That means that for 100 days, Texans… Read more »

URGE WARNS: YOUNG PEOPLE WILL SUFFER IF SUPREME COURT OVERTURNS ABORTION RIGHTS IN JACKSON WOMEN’S HEALTH CASE

Today, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a case whose outcome could eliminate abortion access for many Mississippians and trigger a cascade of abortion bans across the South and Midwest. As the court’s Trump-appointed conservative majority threatens to overturn a nearly 50-year precedent of Roe v. Wade, reproductive justice experts from URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity warn of how a further blow to abortion access will harm communities:  Kimberly Inez McGuire (she/her/ella), Executive Director of URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity said, “In my lifetime, protections for legal abortion have become so threadbare that with this case they could crumble entirely. Anti-abortion extremists have seized state legislatures in the South and the Midwest, placed their acolytes on the Supreme Court,… Read more »

URGE DEMANDS OHIO LEGISLATORS STOP HB 480

Yesterday, Ohio Republicans introduced a total abortion ban that would be enforced by vigilantes who sue abortion providers and anyone who helps someone accessing abortion care. House Bill 480, Senate Bill 123, the trigger abortion ban, and three other blatantly anti-abortion measures are currently all pending in the Ohio legislature. HB 480 joins the harmful anti-abortion brigade led by Texas’ Senate Bill 8, which is currently before the U.S. Supreme Court.   Ohio State Policy and Movement Director Sarah Inskeep (she/her) said in a statement, “Ohio’s extremist politicians like Rep. Powell and Senator Roegner remain hellbent on completely banning abortion in our state. House Bill 480 joins Senate Bill 123, the trigger abortion ban, and three other anti-abortion measures that are currently pending in the Ohio legislature. We demand nothing short of abortion justice in Ohio. We refuse to sit idly by, waiting for a potentially unfavorable court ruling or for any of… Read more »