Planned Parenthood and Advocacy Organizations Call for Restoration of Rights for Young Immigrant Women in Trump Administration Custody
For Immediate Release: Oct. 27, 2017 (Updated: Oct. 27, 2017, 3:35 p.m.)
Washington, D.C.- On Thursday morning, dozens of activists protested Scott Lloyd, Donald Trump’s Director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement, for his department’s treatment of young immigrant women in their custody, as seen in the case of Jane Doe. Over 104 organizations signed onto a letter to the Offices of Refugee Resettlement and Health and Human Services expressing outrage at policies intended to deny young women access to reproductive health care - including legal abortion.
Organizations including ACLU and NARAL collected over 75,000 petition signatures calling for Scott Lloyd and the Trump administration to immediately reverse their policy of interfering in women’s access to essential reproductive health care - including safe, legal abortion. United States Senators and Members of the House of Representatives sent letters to HHS and ORR insisting that this undue burden being placed on unaccompanied immigrant minors by Scott Lloyd and this administration cease immediately.
Before Scott Lloyd’s hearing, dozens of protesters crowded the entrance, demanding justice for young immigrant women like Jane Doe in this administration’s custody who are being forced to submit to extreme, and ideologically-driven policies that put women’s health and lives at risk.
Over 104 organizations signed onto a letter to the Offices of Refugee Resettlement and Health and Human Services expressing grave concern for Scott Lloyd and his department’s “mistreatment of and abuse of power over 17-year-old Jane Doe and other young people in your custody” and “demanding the immediate suspension of any existing ORR policies and practices that restricted prompt access to the full range of reproductive health care for Jane and continue to restrict the rights of thousands of other individuals within ORR custody.”
Statement from Dana Singiser, Vice President, Public Policy and Government Affairs for Planned Parenthood Action Fund
Scott Lloyd demonstrates why Trump’s extreme, anti-women and anti-abortion appointees are so dangerous. With thousands of young women under his control,there’s no doubt that instances of unjust treatment - like what Jane Doe had to endure - will continue. It’s clear Scott Lloyd’s intention is to impose his personal views on young women in the government’s care, denying them access to health care and constitutional rights. It is simply outrageous and wrong.
Every woman deserves access to basic health care, including abortion, regardless of her immigration status. It is unacceptable that Scott Lloyd and the rest of the Trump administration continue to put women’s health and lives at risk, in pursuit of their extremist political and ideological agenda. Together, we will keep fighting for all of the women like Jane.
Statement from the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health
Justice prevailed yesterday for Jane even though Jane Doe was finally able to access her abortion by going to court, we must continue fighting against the shameful policies that allowed the ORR to interfere with her human right to healthcare, dignity, and self-determination. ORR’s treatment of Jane was not only shocking in its disregard of her autonomy and dignity – it was also against the law. Jane’s case is not the first time the ORR has abused their power to deny people in their care access to the full range of reproductive healthcare. Yesterday, Jane got justice. Today, we continue fighting so that other young immigrant women like Jane held under ORR’s custody not be denied access to an abortion and abused, coerced, and shamed into forgoing the critical care they need.
We delivered this letter today to HHS Secretary Eric Hargan and ORR Director Scott Lloyd to demand immediate change to existing ORR policies and practices that restrict the reproductive rights, including abortion, of people under their custody. We believe that there is no need more fundamental than the need for access to safe, quality healthcare and information. No one should interfere with a person’s right to make decisions about her health and her future with dignity and self-determination. ORR is bound by law to respect this right.
Lloyd has been actively engaged in preventing unaccompanied minors in the care of ORR from accessing abortion services. In March of 2017, HHS implemented a dangerous and unconstitutional policy change dictating that ORR would intervene in cases of young women and girls deciding to access abortion.
Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including voter education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy.