Seattle, WA – Councilmember Tammy J. Morales (District 2 – South Seattle & Chinatown / International District) issued the following statement after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Roe v Wade decision, restricting healthcare access for millions of women across America:
“Today, the right-wing Supreme Court disregarded a half-century of precedence and achieved their perverse agenda – to violate basic human and constitutional rights, to take away a person’s right to choose, to force people to give birth against their will. While this is a moment of unspeakable sorrow, we must not let it lead to despair. One in four women in this country have had an abortion. I am one of them. And I am terrified and outraged for the many people who will need abortion care today and every day forthcoming, particularly Black and Brown folks across the country. Make no mistake, this ruling is the Supreme Court mandating forced pregnancy, taking away the right to self-determination and personal freedom.
I want everyone to know our office has been working on legislation since the Supreme Court’s draft opinion was leaked. That legislation is aimed at protecting workers who seek abortions, regulating crisis pregnancy centers, and providing safe passage for people seeking abortion treatment and gender-affirming care at clinics in our city. We know that reproductive healthcare, including abortion care, is an essential service, now and always. We must come together and organize to ensure that everyone has the freedom to privacy and to decide what to do with their own bodies.
We know that the US has one of the highest maternal mortality rates among nations with comparable economies. Mortality is especially high for Black mothers — Black women are 3-4 times more likely to experience a pregnancy-related death than white women. Similar statistics are true for women of color. This is unacceptable.
The harm from this Supreme Court is going to have ramifications for generations. It is not lost on me that just yesterday, the Supreme Court overturned the NYC gun law which had set restrictions on carrying guns in public. The hypocrisy of saying states cannot make laws governing the constitutional right to bear arms, and then saying the states can overturn a constitutional right to reproductive healthcare, is deeply troubling and reflective of the things they choose to prioritize. Five of the justices who voted to overturn this decision were appointed by two presidents who lost the popular vote. This court does NOT represent the majority of people in the US. In fact, strong majorities across the US support reproductive rights, including to birth control, and oppose abortion bans. More than 7 in 10 people believe abortion should remain legal.
There are ups and downs in the fight for justice. Today’s ruling is a down. But I will not stay down. People will continue to have abortions, the fight for reproductive justice will continue, and I will be supporting these fights at every level I can.”