On May 2, the eve of Ohio’s primary election, Politico reported on a leaked draft opinion from an unidentified U.S. Supreme Court clerk that suggested a majority of the court will vote to overturn the 1973 case Roe v. Wade that legalized abortion.
In recent months, a number of states have passed or proposed a variety of abortion restrictions that effectively criminalize the procedure as well as related resources like transportation or medical counseling.
Despite the fact that abortion is currently legal in Ohio up to 20 weeks gestation and nine abortion clinics remain open in the state, lawmakers are looking to pass more restrictive legislative in the coming months. In December, Gov. Mike DeWine signed Senate Bill 157, a Republican-sponsored law that, if passed, will track failed abortions, restrict the type of physicians who can work in the ambulatory surgical facilities where abortions are conducted and prohibit doctors working with or affiliated with public medical schools in the state from being a part of abortion clinics, among other things.
Legislators also are considering the passage of multiple "trigger" bans that would immediately take effect if Roe v. Wade is overturned this summer. State Rep. Jean Schmidt, R-Loveland, sponsored Ohio's latest trigger ban that includes no exemptions for rape or incest.
Relatedly, groups are suing DeWine and the state of Ohio over a House bill's "medical conscience" provision that would allow physicians to turn away patients if they decide that treating them would violate their own "moral, ethical or religious beliefs or principles." Opponents say that similar to a Roe reversal, such provisions would remove medical rights and adequate care for members of the LGBTQ+ community, including care for transgender individuals.
Given that the reversal of Roe v. Wade could bring restrictions and bans on funding, care and more related to abortions and other bodily autonomy, those in favor of reproductive freedom are now being called upon more than ever to make a difference.
In Greater Cincinnati and throughout Ohio, organizations are accepting donations of time and money in the fight for bodily autonomy and reproductive rights. If you're short on extra money, organizations like Planned Parenthood are hosting protests throughout the state. In response to the SCOTUS draft leak, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio will host a protest called "Bans Off Our Bodies" at 11:30 a.m. May 14 at Fountain Square.
Pro-choice advocates can also donate funds to reproductive freedom and abortion organizations in Ohio and the Cincinnati area, such as:
This non-profit organization, based in Columbus, is involved in lobbying for pro-choice legislation and assists in grassroots efforts to elect government officials who also support reproductive freedom efforts. Money donated to Pro-Choice Ohio will support the funding of local pro-choice political candidates and distribution of pro-choice voter guides; public education and workshops about reproductive freedom and other similar topics and more efforts related lobbying and electoral processes. Donate money to Pro-Choice Ohio by visiting prochoiceohio.org.
Women Have Options
The Columbus-based non-profit Women Have Options provides financial assistance and support, like transportation and housing, to patients in need of abortions, emergency contraception and birth control in the state of Ohio. Since 1992, Women Have Options has made it possible for patients to receive abortion services at Ohio clinics. Donations will go directly towards these efforts. To donate to Women Have Options, visit womenhaveoptions.org.
Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region
Currently, only one full-service abortion clinic exists in the Cincinnati area — the Cincinnati Surgical Center operated by Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region. Donations can be made directly to Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region, which will go toward abortion services and other reproductive and sexual care, including STI testing and birth control. The organization also provides affirming healthcare to transgender patients. Donate to Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region by visiting Planned Parenthood's website. Select the tab that says "Specific Giving," and scroll through the list of Planned Parenthood organizations until you reach Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region.
Center for Reproductive Rights
The Center for Reproductive Rights is global human rights organization on five continents that has used its influence and advocacy to craft and defend public policy that grants reproductive rights like abortion services. Over the past few decades, the non-profit has been involved in court cases and litigation that cements reproductive rights for people all over the world. Donations to the Center for Reproductive Rights will allow the non-profit to continue these efforts and can be made by visiting reproductiverights.org.
Here are a few other reproductive rights organizations accepting donations:
- Midwest Access Coalition
- Agnes Reynolds Jackson Fund (based in Toledo)
- Ohio Women's Alliance
- Kentucky Health Justice Network