‘These laws will fall’: Abortion rights regain lost ground with Supreme Court


July 2, 2016

On Monday morning Kierra Johnson stood before the Supreme Court. The summer sun reflected off the white marble steps. She’d already begun to sweat, and it was only 7:30 a.m.

Johnson, executive director of the nonprofit organization Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity (URGE), had gathered there with several staff members to learn the fate of Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, the most pivotal abortion rights case in decades. They were not alone.

“That victory — my whole body felt it,” says Johnson, who has worked in reproductive rights for the past 17 years. “There was dancing, crying, hugging, shouting, jumping. Everybody was at that moment an everyday human being just happy to have our humanity affirmed.”