Tragic Roe v Wade overturn will fall hardest on those already facing healthcare discrimination, says ILGA World

Geneva, 24 June 2022 - In a tragic decision, the United States Supreme Court overturned the fundamental right to abortion established in Roe v. Wade in a 6-3 vote. This ruling, ILGA World said today, turns back the clock on the dignity, the autonomy, and the self-determination of millions of people in the country. 

“The reversal of Roe v. Wade will have enormous political and social consequences,” commented ILGA World Co-Secretaries General Luz Elena Aranda and Tuisina Ymania Brown. “Moreover, it will set an extremely dangerous precedent for other countries to follow suit – especially where the policing of women and all people with the ability to carry children has become a staple in the wider anti-rights agenda.”

A draft majority opinion overturning Roe was leaked in early May, sending shockwaves across the country and the global LGBTIQ community, which had gathered in Long Beach, CA during those days for the 30th ILGA World Conference.

During the event, the ILGA World membership supported a motion commenting on the news. “The right to abortion saves lives – it is a pillar of the right of bodily autonomy. […] As LGBTI people, we experience every day how the surveillance on our bodies is a way to control our mere existence. And we know how the impact of abortion restrictions and bans will fall hardest on those already facing discriminatory obstacles to health care.”

Access to safe abortion has long been established as a human right and an integral part of sexual reproductive health and rights by numerous international frameworks, the United Nations Human Rights Committee, and regional human rights courts. Today’s US Supreme Court decision returns the “authority to regulate abortion […] to the people and their elected representatives,” meaning that large parts of the country could quickly move to outlaw this essential health service that has been constitutionally protected for half a century.

“We call on all our communities to unite for bodily autonomy, self-determination and the right to safe abortion everywhere,” concludes ILGA World.

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