Ibis responds to oral arguments before the US Supreme Court in Dobbs v Jackson

December 2021

Cambridge, MA, December 1, 2021 – Today, Supreme Court arguments for the Dobbs v Jackson Women's Health case—which will determine whether all pre-viability prohibitions on elective abortions are unconstitutional—are scheduled to take place. This ban, which would prohibit most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, was signed into law in 2018—but a lower court deemed it unconstitutional under Roe v Wade, which affirms the right to abortion until a fetus is considered viable. The Supreme Court is now considering whether the lower court’s ruling was correct. 

“The Mississippi abortion ban is an assault on people’s human right to a pleasurable, safe, and healthy sexual and reproductive life, and we believe that the lower court ruling blocking this law should be upheld,” said Kelly Blanchard, President of Ibis Reproductive Health. “Access to abortion services is essential health care, and critical for our right to bodily autonomy, our ability to build the futures and the families we choose, and our health and wellbeing—it must be protected. We know that a court ruling does not ensure we all can get the care we need, and there is much more to be done to ensure access for everyone, but our sincere hope is that the Supreme Court affirms that this law denies Mississippians their constitutional and human rights.”

In an effort to preserve people’s right to bodily autonomy and self-determination and overturn this restrictive law, we must turn to data and evidence from experts in the field of sexual and reproductive health—including several Ibis researchers—and others who have collectively spent decades conducting and publishing peer-reviewed research about the safety, incidence, social, psychological, and health impacts of unintended pregnancy and abortion in the US, especially the effects of state restrictions on people seeking abortions. Alongside many remarkable partners, Ibis has contributed a robust portfolio of research highlighting the dangerous consequences of pre-viability abortion bans—evidence that wholly supports Jackson Women's Health Organization in today’s case. This includes our Later Abortion Initiative work, which aims to destigmatize and remove barriers to abortion care after 12 weeks, an essential service that nearly 50,000 abortion clients in the US need every year.

Today, we urge the Supreme Court to heed the extensive evidence that confirms #AbortionIsEssential to people’s health and well-being—and to uphold our constitutional and human right to exercise sexual and reproductive autonomy in all its forms, especially the choice to have an abortion.