Center launches new series of PSAs with video starring actor and reproductive rights supporter Mark Ruffalo
(PRESS RELEASE) On the 41th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the historic decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that recognized a woman’s constitutional right to abortion, the Center for Reproductive Rights calls for broad support of proactive legislation and policy that protects women’s health, rights, and personal decision-making.
Furthermore, to commemorate the 41st anniversary of Roe, the Center for Reproductive Rights is launching a new series of PSAs with a video starring actor and reproductive rights advocate Mark Ruffalo. In the video released today, Mark shares a powerful personal story about his family, and discusses the need to move the issue of reproductive rights forward, not backward. A PSA featuring Tony and multiple Grammy Award winner Dee Dee Bridgewater will follow during the week of January 27.
Said Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights:
“Forty-one years after Roe v. Wade recognized women’s constitutional right to an abortion, the fact remains that Roe’s promise of safe and legal abortion care for all women in the U.S. remains an empty one for millions of Americans.
“As we have seen the devastating consequences of anti-choice laws play out in places like Texas and Mississippi, it has become painfully clear that it’s not just our constitutional rights that are at risk, our very health and lives are in danger.
“We need our elected officials who value the health, lives, and rights of women in the U.S.—from the municipal level to the federal level—to step up and advance laws and policies that actually advance women’s health and safety.
“We need broad support for bills like the federal Women’s Health Protection Act, which would bar politicians on Capitol Hill and in statehouses across the country from trampling on women’s health, rights, and personal decision making through laws that have nothing to do with protecting our health or safety and everything to do with closing abortion clinics.
“It’s time to seize this vital opportunity to reclaim the rights that Roe recognized and the protections it established more than four decades ago.”
More than 120 Members of Congress—including 34 Senators and 95 Representatives—have stepped forward to sponsor the Women’s Health Protection Act (S1691/HR 3471), a Congressional bill designed to end the recent wave of anti-choice laws preventing women from accessing their constitutional right to an abortion—ensuring a woman’s constitutional rights do not depend on her zip code.
Further underscoring the need for legislation like the Women’s Health Protection Act, the Center for Reproductive Rights recently-released State of the States report, featuring interactive maps, detail four of the most extreme and harmful trends in state abortion restrictions enacted in 2013: abortion bans, restrictions on medication abortion, bans on insurance coverage for abortion, and targeted regulation of abortion providers. Of the nearly 250 bills that were considered in 2013 aimed at restricting access to abortion and other reproductive health services, over 30 became law.
Several blatantly unconstitutional laws were so immediately harmful to women’s health and rights that the Center, along with other allies, has been fighting legal battles in state and federal courts over the last year in Arkansas, Arizona, Kansas, Mississippi, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, and Texas.