We, as an Editorial Board, have not fallen silent on the issue of reproductive healthcare.
Today, more than ever, we are clear and firm in our position: abortion is a necessary tenant of reproductive healthcare and a right — end of discussion. The Supreme Court’s decision to uproot this right is reflective of a long-standing sentiment held by many that feel women do not deserve the degree of autonomy necessary to make such a decision about their bodies and wellbeings.
Taking time to reflect on the overturning of Roe v. Wade in June and our coverage over the years, we want to emphasize how far-reaching and disastrous this decision is, especially for poor women, rural women and women of color.
Even in states like North Carolina, where abortion is still legal, women still face roadblocks to receiving affirming, affordable and comprehensive reproductive care.
At their most inexpensive, abortions can cost several hundred dollars, with Pregnancy Decision Line reporting the cost of abortion pills to be $360 in N.C. More invasive procedures and pregnancies that are farther along can cost far more, reaching over $1,000.
Forty-nine percent of women who receive abortions are below the federal poverty line. And for women who must wait and save to afford an abortion, they run the risk of the procedure becoming more costly and unattainable as time goes on.
Meanwhile, according to the Guttmacher Institute, only 16 states provide state-funded abortions in some capacity via Medicaid. The Hyde Amendment prevents federal Medicaid funds from being used to fund abortions.
For those in rural communities, the mere distance between yourself and a clinic is a prohibiting factor. One in five women will travel over 43 miles to receive an abortion.
When we analyze who is getting abortions in America, it is explicitly clear that BIPOC women will bear the burden of Roe v. Wade being overturned. Only 6.6 per 1,000 abortions were those of white women, compared to 23.8 per 1,000 for Black women and 11.7 per 1,000 for Hispanic women.