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Most Black women don't have access to abortion, and they're going to impact the elections

Black women abortion access
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Out of the 11.8 million Black women between the ages of 15 and 49 in the U.S., 57 percent live in areas that restrict access to abortion.

The majority of Black women of reproductive age in the United States live in areas that restrict access to abortion, a new report has found.

Out of the 11.8 million Black women between the ages of 15 and 49, 57 percent (6.7 million) have little to no abortion access, according to a study from the National Partnership for Women & Families (NPWF) and In Our Own Voice.

Of the Black women in states that prohibit abortion, 43 percent live in just three states — Florida, Georgia, and Texas. 2.7 million are already “economically insecure” and 1.4 million work service jobs where wages are lower and sick days are not mandatory.

"Nearly two years later, the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade continues to significantly harm millions of people across the nation, impeding their access to abortion, disrupting their economic futures, and putting their health and even their lives at risk," the report states. "The impact of this decision is particularly harmful for women of color, who are less likely to have access to high-quality, culturally competent health care and face greater economic barriers to getting abortion care."

The report noted that "abortion bans and the harms caused by Dobbs are especially egregious in light of this country’s ongoing maternal health crisis." Black women and birthing people are three times more likely to die in childbirth as compared to white women and birthing people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

There are currently 14 states that prohibit abortion, and an additional 11 that have restrictions on the health care, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. The majority are in the South, which is also where the majority of Black women reside.

A March survey from KFF found that over a quarter of Black women (28 percent) said that abortion is the most important issue to them in the upcoming presidential election. Women ages 18 to 49 – the group "most impacted by reproductive health policy in this country" – said that they "see the upcoming election as a pivotal moment and largely support laws protecting access to abortions."

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Ryan Adamczeski

Ryan is a staff writer at The Advocate, and a graduate of New York University Tisch's Department of Dramatic Writing, with a focus in television writing and comedy. She first became a published author at the age of 15 with her YA novel "Someone Else's Stars," and is now a member of GALECA, the LGBTQ+ society of entertainment critics. In her free time, Ryan likes watching New York Rangers hockey, listening to the Beach Boys, and practicing witchcraft.
Ryan is a staff writer at The Advocate, and a graduate of New York University Tisch's Department of Dramatic Writing, with a focus in television writing and comedy. She first became a published author at the age of 15 with her YA novel "Someone Else's Stars," and is now a member of GALECA, the LGBTQ+ society of entertainment critics. In her free time, Ryan likes watching New York Rangers hockey, listening to the Beach Boys, and practicing witchcraft.