As Other States Impose Restrictions, Massachusetts Abortion Rights Advocates Hold Rally
Boston, MA– On Tuesday afternoon, abortion rights advocates gathered in front of the Massachusetts State House to show their support for women’s right to access abortion services. There were approximately 200 people present at the rally. Activists in Massachusetts are determined to protect reproductive rights, even as other states pass sweeping bans on abortion.
Some women at the rally dressed in red robes like characters from the dystopian novel and web tv series, The Handmaid's Tale. Laura Innis of Falmouth stated in an interview, “We need birth control to be accessible to every woman, and we need things to be between a woman, her doctor and her own god, if so be.”
In the past few weeks, laws restricting abortion access were passed in states such as Alabama and Georgia. In response to the subsequent uproar, Massachusetts activists are focusing on protecting abortions rights in this state. Some worry that the Supreme Court could overturn Roe v. Wade, which would likely leave it up to the states to make their own legislation.
The state constitution of Massachusetts provides a legal right for a woman to obtain an abortion from a health provider. The current law permits abortions up to 24 weeks, with later abortions allowed only in cases where the pregnant woman's life is at risk. There is a proposal on the table right now that would expand women's access to abortions in Massachusetts.
The ROE Act is currently making its way through the Massachusetts government, and if it is passed, women will be able to obtain an abortion later on in their pregnancy as a result of risks to the pregnant woman's physical or mental health, or if there are lethal fetal abnormalities that make unlikely the child will survive outside the womb. The ROE Act would also remove the requirement for parental consent for minors seeking an abortion.
There is not yet a scheduled hearing on the ROE Act.
Image via Wikimedia Commons / TitiNicola