URGE Statement on Ruling to Temporarily Block Texas’ Abortion Ban, S.B. 8
October 7, 2021
Statement from Kimberly Inez McGuire, Executive Director of URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity, on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas granting the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) a preliminary injunction in its lawsuit challenging Texas Senate Bill 8 (S.B. 8), a six-week abortion ban that would also let private citizens sue those who support people who have an abortion after this time.
Under the terms of the preliminary injunction, no person may bring lawsuits against abortion providers, funds, and supporters to enforce the six-week abortion ban while litigation in the case continues. The State of Texas is also prohibited from enforcing the law.
“Today’s decision by the District Court is a huge win for human rights and the fight for abortion access in Texas and across the country. Since taking effect on September 1, S.B. 8 has succeeded at instilling fear. The extremist anti-abortion bill has shut down clinics and forced physicians to turn away patients who desperately want to make the best decisions for themselves, their families, and their futures. For the past month, Texans have experienced an unprecedented level of fear and anxiety around the possibility of becoming pregnant. S.B. 8 has drastically changed the options available to those who do not want to remain pregnant and forced Texans to possibly make the difficult decision to cross state lines for abortion care or to carry an unwanted pregnancy to term. Today, Texans temporarily gain back some of their autonomy, but the war that their legislators have waged on them continues.”
“While we celebrate the relief granted by the preliminary injunction, we cannot forget that it is a temporary defense to a longstanding problem, and the fate of millions of Texans still lies in the hands of the court. S.B. 8 is just one of a series of severe restrictions on abortion access in Texas that ultimately fall hardest on Black and brown women, immigrants, and trans and non-binary young people of color. The decisions made by the court in response to S.B. 8 not only impact Texans but the one in four people who can become pregnant and will choose an abortion in their lifetime. This is especially true as we see states across the country threaten to pass their own versions of S.B. 8 as well as other harmful restrictions and all-out abortion bans.”
“We have demanded real leadership from the Biden-Harris administration and are pleased to see the administration has listened to the protests of the young people who put them in office by making this preliminary injunction a possibility. Now, it is time for the court to defend abortion access and end this human rights crisis in Texas and everywhere. Each day that S.B. 8 is in effect is a day where millions of Americans have been told their lives and decisions don’t matter.”
URGE envisions a liberated world where we can live with justice, love freely, express our gender and sexuality, and define and create families of our choosing. To achieve our vision of liberation, URGE builds power and sustains a young people’s movement for reproductive justice by centering the leadership of young people of color who are women, queer, trans, nonbinary, and people with low incomes. As a state-driven national organization, URGE organizes our communities, provides a political home for young people, advocates for meaningful policy change, and shifts culture, working in states where the challenges and opportunities are greatest.