Statements From URGE on the Reintroduction of the Women’s Health Protection Act in the U.S. House of Representatives

March 30, 2023

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives reintroduced the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA), a bill that would create a statutory right for abortion care across the country. The House previously passed WHPA in 2021 and 2022, but it failed to reach the necessary 60 votes in the Senate each time. 

In response to this news, Kimberly Inez McGuire, Executive Director of URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity, said:

“We applaud the abortion-positive leaders in the House for their continued support and commitment to defending and restoring abortion access. The Women’s Health Protection Act, along with the EACH Act, is a critical element in our broader fight to end abortion bans and attain the access we deserve. Today, we are one step closer to realizing our full vision for reproductive justice, one where free, fair, and just abortion access is a reality for all, as well as the right to have and raise children with safety and dignity.

“As the findings of the House bill make plain, abortion care is a social good and basic human right. Unfortunately, millions of young people, women, transgender and non-binary people, and communities of color are denied this basic right to decide when and if to continue a pregnancy. Abortion bans compound existing health inequities with catastrophic effects. Passing WHPA would be an important step in the right direction.

“Even as we celebrate the introduction of this bill, we must acknowledge the ongoing human rights crisis of abortion bans and the criminalization of abortion seekers and helpers. Our people are hurting and we can and must do more. We will not stop fighting until everyone has access to the reproductive health care they deserve.”

Monica Edwards, URGE’s Federal Policy Manager, said:

“As the U.S. House of Representatives reintroduces the Women’s Health Protection Act, we stand unequivocally in support of abortion access for all, without shame, stigma, or political interference. As an advocate for reproductive justice, I applaud our bold champions in the House — Representatives Chu, Frankel, Pressley, and Escobar — on reintroducing WHPA. As a native of Alabama – a state where abortion access has been completely decimated, I recognize the need for bold action to address the dire crisis we find ourselves in. Additionally, we know that abortion bans and restrictions are racist and classist by design, impacting people of color, young people, and low-income people the most. Passing WHPA would be one step toward achieving a world where reproductive justice is not only the vision but the reality.

“Achieving real abortion access shouldn’t be based on political agendas, and health care decisions shouldn’t be made by self-serving politicians. The time for Congress to come together and pass WHPA is long overdue. 

“WHPA has been passed by the House twice with bipartisan support, and we look forward to working with our champions in the 118th Congress to work toward passing it again.”