STATEMENT FROM URGE ON OHIO’S HISTORIC ABORTION WIN
November 7, 2023
The citizen-led “The Right to Protect Reproductive Freedom with Protections for Health and Safety Amendment” passed, protecting abortion rights in the state.
(Columbus, Ohio) – Today, voters throughout Ohio decisively voted in favor of amending the state’s constitution to protect access to abortion. Ohioans United for Reproductive Freedom, the coalition leading this effort, organized thousands of young people and volunteers across the state to deliver a decisive and necessary victory for reproductive rights and justice. URGE: Unite for Reproductive and Gender Equity, has been a leading Executive Committee member of this coalition, bringing the voices of young people, particularly young people of color, to the table for this effort.
Kimberly Inez McGuire, Executive Director of URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity, issued the following statement:
“The people of Ohio have voted and declared that abortion bans are not welcome in the Buckeye State! This year has been a roller coaster. Abortion opponents and emboldened politicians alike have tried to thwart the will of the people in Ohio, and have been defeated once again. After each and every attempt to silence the voices of Ohioans – from deliberately placing confusing language on the ballot to attempting to increase the voter threshold this past August – Ohio voters remained unwavering in their belief that decisions about our bodies and health belong to the people – not the government.
“This victory would not have been possible without the tireless advocacy of young people, Black women, and people of color in Ohio. Together, we collected signatures, knocked on doors, registered voters, and most importantly, got out the vote in incredible numbers. Young people are a force to be reckoned with, not just in Ohio, but nationwide. From Kansas to Kentucky to Montana and Michigan, young people and BIPOC organizers have been on the frontlines of ballot initiatives to defend abortion, demonstrating that we will not stand by idly when politicians attempt to take away our rights.
“This is a major moment for Ohioans, as yet another state that has made it clear: abortion is a winning issue. Now, we look to other states to follow Ohio’s suit and protect personal decisions and reproductive health. URGE will be there too, building young people power for reproductive justice.
“As we celebrate this win, we look to the future and the broader fight for liberation. The national crisis of abortion access remains, with 13 states having outlawed abortion. We cannot, and will not stop until all abortion seekers are free from restrictions, criminalization, and stigma, and each of us can make our own decisions about pregnancy and parenting with dignity and support.”
About URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity
URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity is a national nonprofit organization that works to build young people’s power around reproductive issues by centering the leadership of young people of color who are women, queer, trans, nonbinary and people of low income across the South, Midwest and California. To learn, please visit urge.org.