The likely overturning of Roe v Wade will be detrimental to survivors of domestic violence.
Reproductive coercion is a type of abuse which undermines a survivor’s right to manage their own reproductive health. It can involve, but is not limited to, birth control sabotage (such as flushing pills, poking holes in condoms, etc.) or a person using abuse withholding a survivor’s birth control. Survivor’s choices may be questioned or belittled until they are coerced into not using birth control at all.
As a result, reproductive coercion can result in unwanted &, in some cases, unsafe pregnancies.
Abuse typically escalates when survivors are pregnant. This escalation in violence exacerbates dangerous and unstable situations for the survivor & their unborn fetus. For these reasons and more, survivors may choose to terminate a pregnancy.
Abortion can be viewed as nuanced survival strategy.
Lack of safe and legal abortion creates & deepens survivor pathways to criminalization. Based on history and current statistics, laws against safe and accessible abortion will no doubt disproportionately police Black, Brown, Indigenous and other survivors of color.
Laws against safe and accessible abortion intersect with racism, victim-blaming, classism, sexism and transphobia.
The right to safe abortion is not just a ciswomen’s issue; reproductive coercion and safe access to abortion also impact some transmen and nonbinary folks. Cisgender men, including those who do not use abuse, are adversely impacted when their loved ones are prohibited from taking care of their physical bodies, or from practicing their right to choose.
Survivor safety is treated as a privilege by the state; we must continue to strategize and take care of each other. The state, it’s systems and it’s courts may espouse to ‘protect’ survivors, but time and again, they fail to do so.
We echo this message: making safe and accessible abortions illegal will not end abortion, it never has. It will create clandestine and potentially unsafe spaces where these procedures will happen. We call on our community, our state and our supreme court to ensure survivors and others can exercise their right to choose to have an abortion based on their individual circumstances, desires, health & emotional readiness.
Team WOMAN Inc.