MEDIA ADVISORY FOR: Tuesday, March 9, 2021
WASHINGTON, DC -- Starting Tuesday, March 9, at 10:00 AM ET, a mobile billboard will traverse the U.S. Capitol urging the Biden Administration and Congress to ensure access to quality sexual and reproductive health care, including abortion care, in the U.S. and around the globe. The action comes on the heels of International Women’s Day and as Representative Jan Schakowsky re-introduces the Abortion is Health Care Everywhere Act, with unprecedented co-sponsorship, to repeal the Helms Amendment and expand abortion access globally, in the House.
The billboard was commissioned by CHANGE (the Center for Health and Gender Equity), an organization that promotes sexual and reproductive health and rights as a means to achieve true gender equality, and the leading national women’s advocacy group UltraViolet. It will display messages reading: “President Biden and Congress: Support Pregnant People Around the Globe by Protecting Our Health and Rights,” “President Biden and Congress: Ensure Access to Quality Abortion Care for ALL,” “President Biden and Congress: Advance Maternal Health at Home and Abroad,” and “Pass the Abortion is Health Care Everywhere Act.”
WHEN: Tuesday, March 9, 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
WHERE: Loop between the White House, Down to Congress and Up Pennsylvania.
According to Guttmacher Institute, repealing the Helms amendment would prevent at least 19 million unsafe abortions abroad annually and would decrease the number of maternal deaths due to unsafe abortions by 98% in 33 countries.
“The Abortion is Healthcare Everywhere Act is a crucial step in dismantling neo-colonialism and racism in our U.S. foreign policy,” said Serra Sippel, President of CHANGE (the Center for Health and Gender Equity). “It’s long past time for the U.S. to stop undermining efforts by countries and advocates to make safe abortion accessible to those who need it. Ending Helms is a matter of life or death: its repeal would prevent millions of unsafe abortions and millions of subsequent injuries and disabilities, and would sharply decrease maternal deaths and pregnancy-related complications for women internationally. Moreover, removing Helms would serve as an opportunity for the United States to play catch-up when it comes to its leadership in the realm of sexual and reproductive health and rights. People all over the world cannot afford for the U.S. government to turn its back on them. We look to Biden and to Congress to pass the Abortion is Health Care Everywhere Act and repeal the Helms Amendment immediately.”
“Bodily autonomy and access to reproductive healthcare is the foundation of a better future for women, communities of color, LGBTQ+ people, young people, and people with low incomes,” said Sonja Spoo, Campaign Director of UltraViolet. “As the world works to rebuild from the devastation of this pandemic, an economic crisis, and centuries of systemic racism, we must continue to cement these rights and dismantle the policies implemented by men like Donald Trump to deny the world’s most vulnerable communities the right to abortion and other critical forms of reproductive healthcare in the U.S. and abroad. The administration must move with the urgency this moment requires to ensure access to abortion and reproductive health care for all against mounting threats both in the U.S. and abroad. Critically, we need President Biden to make good on his campaign promise and take a strong stance against the Helms Amendment and for Congress to work to pass the Abortion is Health Care Everywhere Act.”
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CHANGE is a U.S.-based nongovernmental organization that promotes sexual and reproductive health and rights as a means to achieve gender equality and empowerment of all women and girls, by shaping the public’s conversation, elevating women’s voices, and influencing U.S. and global policies. We are guided by our vision of a world that respects, protects, and honors sexual and reproductive rights for all. Our work is grounded in and driven by a human rights framework at the intersection of multiple sectors including women’s rights, human rights, family planning, maternal health, HIV and AIDS, and gender-based violence.
UltraViolet is a community of more than one million people that drives feminist cultural and political change. Through people power and strategic advocacy, we work to improve the lives of women and girls of all identities and backgrounds, and all people impacted by sexism, by dismantling discrimination and creating a cost for sexism.