ARC-Southeast Supports Floridians Against Repressive Abortion Bans!


ARC-Southeast stands in firm opposition to Florida’s recent enactment of a 6-week abortion ban, set to take effect on May 1, which will push birthing people into even more dangerous, troubling circumstances for simply trying to access reproductive care. This draconian law is not only a direct attack on reproductive freedoms but a grave injustice to all birthing people in Florida, with deep implications for the broader Southeast region.

“This ban, shrouded in white supremacy, is another attempt to take away our autonomy,” said Alexia Rice-Henry, Co-Executive Director of ARC-Southeast. “It will add another hurdle, but won’t stop folks from having that ultimate say. As Dr. Deshawn Taylor often reminds us, most people innately know that they have ultimate say over their bodies and their lives. Therefore, we stay committed to supporting those in Florida and the Southeast with the care they so desperately need.”

The 6-week ban aligns Florida with neighboring states like Georgia and Alabama, as the region with some of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country, effectively outlawing abortions before most individuals even know they are pregnant. Not only is this law incredibly unscientific, it is part of the larger targeting of women, TLGBQ+ communities, and communities of color in the South.

“We will continue to ensure Southerners and Floridians have accessible abortion care despite oppressive restrictions and discriminatory barriers,” Said Angel Whaley, Co-Executive Director of ARC-Southeast. “We are resolute in our support of bodily autonomy and self-determination, and ARC-Southeast refuses to yield in our commitment to reproductive freedom for all. We know these restrictive measures do not exist in isolation, they are part of a wider assault on reproductive rights, bodily autonomy, and discrimination across the nation.”

If last week’s news about the “trigger effect”/six week ban seems confusing, you are not alone — that’s on purpose. Until 2022, Florida’s constitution was interpreted to protect abortion rights under a privacy clause, but the Court’s recent decision (April 1, 2024) asserts no clear right to abortion within this clause, allowing the six-week ban to proceed. Simultaneously, the Court upheld a ballot initiative challenging this ban, which will give voters the power to protect abortion rights in November. So while the ban severely restricts abortion access now, the upcoming ballot offers a pathway to potentially overturn it in November.

This ban will have catastrophic effects on the region, exacerbating existing inequalities in access to healthcare and disproportionately impacting those already marginalized by our healthcare system. Floridians of color already experience alarming rates of maternal mortality, heart disease, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, and mental health crises, and this 6-week ban will further limit access to reproductive care across the state, exacerbating these deep health disparities. Florida has also been an important state for those in the Southeast traveling for abortion care, and now new, creative methods of support will need to be implemented for those individuals needing care.

ARC-Southeast remains committed to fighting for reproductive freedom and access to comprehensive healthcare for everyone, regardless of race, class, age, sexuality, gender, or location. We know that ALL abortion bans are racist and classist, because it is our poor, working class, Black, immigrant, and BIPOC communities that will face the brunt of these repressive bans. We stand in solidarity with our partners in Florida and across the Southeast in challenging this oppressive law, and will continue upholding the right to safe, legal, and accessible abortion care.

We urge our supporters to join us in this fight, to raise their voices against this unjust law, and to work towards a future where reproductive rights are recognized as human rights. Together, we can resist these attacks on our abortion and reproductive freedoms, and make reproductive justice a reality in the South.

ARC-Southeast remains committed to serving Floridians who need help accessing abortion. Please consider supporting ARC-Southeast today, to help us fulfill this commitment.

If you are a Florida resident that needs support paying for or accessing abortion, you are NOT alone. Here are some Florida abortion funds and resources to check out:

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