Hundreds Attend Rallies to Call on Politicians to Stand on the Right Side of Women’s History, Protect Women’s Access to Full Range of Reproductive Health Care

Washington, DC – In key states across the country this week, Planned Parenthood supporters are rallying at state capitols to protect women’s access to health care.  Alongside lawmakers, physicians, patients, and women’s health advocates, hundreds of Planned Parenthood supporters in Florida, Iowa, Texas, and Tennessee called on politicians to stand on the right side of women’s history and stop interfering in women’s personal medical decisions. The rallies highlighted how deeply out of touch and unpopular is legislation attacking women’s access to birth control, basic health care, and safe and legal abortion.

“Despite the fact that the majority of Americans think a woman should be able to make her own personal medical decisions without government interference, politicians across the country have been working overtime to restrict access to birth control, health screenings, and safe, legal abortion. At Planned Parenthood, we’ve seen firsthand the devastating consequences for women when politicians block access to health care — when women are forced to delay vital care, or simply go without,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund. “Together with our eight million supporters across the country, Planned Parenthood will continue to fight for women's health and rights in statehouses and courthouses across the country — because a woman's right to make her own personal medical decisions shouldn't depend on where she lives.”

In Texas, as hundreds rallied  in the capitol this afternoon, women shared personal accounts of lifesaving cancer screenings they received at Planned Parenthood — care that is now under attack despite opposition from lawmakers across the aisleToday in Florida, women’s health advocates gathered in Tallahassee as part of ongoing “My health, My life. No matter what” weekly actions (more hereand here). As dozens of Iowans gathered in the capitol today for Planned Parenthood of the Heartland’s Lobby Day, attorneys for Planned Parenthood were fighting in court against a dangerous law that could end access to safe, legal abortion in most parts of the state. In Tennesseemore than 220 women’s health advocates organized at the capitol yesterday to highlight the importance of preserving access to reproductive health care.

Only a little more than two months into 2015, politicians have introduced more than 240 provisions aimed at restricting access to abortion in state legislatures, according to the Guttmacher Institute. This is on top of the more than 230 restrictions on safe, legal abortion enacted since 2011 — more than in the entire previous decade. More than half (57 percent) of American women of reproductive age are now living in a state that is either hostile or very hostile to abortion rights.