By NAN Staff Writer
News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, July 6, 2022: Two Caribbean American U.S. Congressmembers today introduced a resolution condemning the United States Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.
Dominican Republic-born Representatives Adriano Espaillat (NY-13), and Haitian American Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick (FL-20) introduced the resolution and reaffirmed their commitment to advancing reproductive justice and judicial reform.
The Espaillat-Cherfilus-McCormick resolution:
1. Condemns the restless and newly constituted Supreme Court’s holding in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization;
2. Commits to utilizing constitutional authorities provided to Congress under Article III of the Constitution to enact judicial reform, helping reassure public confidence in the Supreme Court so that it is not viewed as a partisan institution.
3. Commits to ensuring that Federal law advances reproductive justice, recognizing that access to abortion constitutes access to health care as a fundamental liberty of all human beings.
4. Commits to protecting communities that will be disproportionately impacted by the holding in Dobbs, including women of color, undocumented women, women living in poverty, LGBTQIA+ individuals, gender nonconforming individuals, and individuals with disabilities.
5. Urges the Executive Branch to utilize constitutional authorities and a whole-of-government approach to advance reproductive justice.
Click here to read the Espaillat-Cherfilus-McCormick resolution in its entirety.
Approximately 64,000,000 women and girls of reproductive age live in the United States, and more than half of them live in states that could seek to ban or further restrict access to abortion now that the Supreme Court overturned Roe and Casey. As Justices Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan stated in their dissenting opinion, the holding in Dobbs results in the “curtailment of women’s right, and of their status as free and equal citizens.”
Women living in poverty, people of color, undocumented persons, as well as transgender and gender non-binary individuals will be disproportionately harmed by the Supreme Court’s action. The decision to end the federal constitutional right to an abortion strips these groups of choice and will have reverberating negative personal and financial outcomes, including financial instability, the ability to attain higher education, as well as disruptions to the overall health care for people reliant on clinics for preventative care.
“Our nation is reeling following the Supreme Court’s decision to abolish the reproductive rights recognized in Roe and Casey and relegate women and others to second class status here in our nation,” said Rep. Espaillat.“The Supreme Court acted as politicians not neutral jurists when they obliterated decades of progress for equality and reproductive justice for millions of women in America, who lost a fundamental constitutional protection and the freedom of choice. This decision will disproportionately harm women of color, women living in poverty, and undocumented women who will be unable to travel, and will potentially put lives in danger as studies indicate that pregnancy-related deaths will increase by 21 percent when reproductive rights are restricted. Congress must commit to correcting this wrong and ensuring the fight for reproductive justice continues.”
“Abortion bans are systemic discrimination and racism in action—and the impact of this decision falls hardest on people who already face discriminatory obstacles to health care—particularly Black, Indigenous, and other people of color, people with disabilities, people in rural areas, young people, undocumented people, and those having difficulty making ends meet. Lawmakers must support health policies based on sound science and evidence,” said Rep. Cherfilus-McCormick. “Politicians must seek to improve access to care, not restrict it. Legislative restrictions fundamentally interfere with the patient-provider relationship and decrease access to necessary care for all women, and particularly for low-income women and those living long distances from health care providers. Health care decisions should be made jointly only by patients and their trusted health care professionals, not by politicians. Decades of attacks have left abortion rights hanging by a thread in the U.S. I am proud to have voted for the Women’s Health Protection Act, and will keep fighting until every person, no matter where we live, how much money we make, or what we look like, has the freedom to make our own decisions about our lives and futures.”
The resolution introduced by Congressman Espaillat and Congresswoman Cherfilus-McCormick, as well as 50 original co-sponsors, recognizes this.
“It is a call to action that everyone who cares about democracy, equality, and justice should heed,” said Prof. Khiara Bridges, Professor of Law at UC Berkeley School of Law and Faculty Director of the Center on Reproductive Rights and Justice.
Co-sponsors, include: Representatives Judy Chu (CA-27), Mondaire Jones (NY-17), Ayanna Pressley (MA-07), Adam B. Schiff (CA-28), Jamaal Bowman, Ed.D (NY-16), Ilhan Omar (MN-05), Ro Khanna (CA-17), Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC-At Large), Yvette Clarke (NY-09), Grace Meng (NY-06), Seth Moulton (MA-06), Troy A. Carter, Sr. (LA-02), Ritchie Torres (NY-15), Nydia M. Velázquez (NY-07), Paul D. Tonko (NY-20), Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Nanette Diaz Barragán (CA-44), Dina Titus (NV-01), Gerald Connolly (VA-11), Suzanne Bonamici (OR-01), Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ-12), Donald Payne, Jr. (NJ-10), Danny K. Davis (IL-07), Janice Schakowsky (IL-09), Sheila Jackson Lee (TX-18), Mark Takano (CA-41), Brenda Lawrence (MI-14), Anthony G. Brown (MD-04), Nikema Williams (GA-05), Raja Krishnamoorthi (IL-08), Albio Sires (NJ-08), Jahana Hayes (CT-05), Dwight Evans (PA-03), Emanuel Cleaver, II (MO-05), Mike Quigley (IL-05), Suzan DelBene (WA-01), Susie Lee (NV-03), Madeleine Dean (PA-04), Andre Carson (IN-07), David Scott (GA-13), Frederica Wilson (FL-24), Jerry McNerney (CA-09), Haley Stevens (MI-11), Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11), Andy Levin (MI-09), Mike Doyle (PA-18), Veronica Escobar (TX-16), Grace F. Napolitano (CA-32), Juan Vargas (CA-51), and Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12).