Washington, DC, 4/12/23, … On April 7th a federal district court in Texas issued a ruling blocking the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval of Mifepristone — a medication used in half the abortions in this country. This drug has been used safely (in conjunction with Misoprostol) for over two decades by more than 3.7 million women in the United States for both abortion and miscarriage care. The decision does not take effect until April 14th, allowing for the appeal process to occur.
The pill can be sent quickly and discreetly through the mail and be taken within the privacy of one’s home; thus making it a desirable option when seeking to end an early pregnancy. For the women in the 14 states where clinical abortions are banned or restricted since Roe v. Wade was overturned in June, it’s one of the last practical alternatives left.
The case, Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine v. FDA, was brought by extreme anti-abortion groups to a hand-selected, radical Trump-appointed judge, Matthew Kacsmaryk, as part of a larger campaign to ban abortion entirely nationwide.
If the decision to block Mifepristone takes effect, it can impact one’s ability to access care in all 50 states, D.C., and U.S. territories. It will disproportionately impact people of color and people with the lowest incomes – inflicting the greatest harm upon those who cannot access alternatives to abortion pills due to factors such as where they live and what doctors they can see.
At about the same time as the above ruling was issued, in Spokane, Washington; U.S. District Judge Thomas O. Rice, an Obama appointee, directed federal officials not to hinder access to the drug in at least 17 states where Democrats sued to keep the drug’s availability intact. The issue will likely be settled by the U.S. Supreme Court, which last year repealed Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark Supreme Court decision that established a constitutional right to abortions.
One of the Coalition of Labor Union Women’s founding principles is to support the right of reproductive health, including access to abortion care; reaffirming through resolution and action since 1974.
Elise Bryant emphatically stated, “We will join with our partners advocating for safe abortion care by fighting this in the streets, in the courts, through legislative and electoral action until abortion access is once again our right.”
(4/13) NEWS FLASH: Abortion pill case appealed to the Supreme Court. The US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit refused to fully block Judge Kacsmaryk’s dangerous ruling, so the government has appealed on an emergency basis to the Supreme Court. Check out events sponsored by Women’s March for 4/15/23 in your area here.