Granite State Progress and Reproductive Freedom Fund of NH Celebrate US House Passage of Women’s Health Protection Act
Critical legislation will protect abortion access throughout the U.S.
CONCORD, NH – Granite State Progress and the Reproductive Freedom Fund of New Hampshire celebrate the passage of H.R. 3755, the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA) by the U.S. House of Representatives. The WHPA creates a federal safeguard against state-level bans and medically unnecessary restrictions that single out abortion and impede access to care. Granite State Progress and RFFNH are part of a coalition of more than 100 federal, state, and local organizations supporting efforts to advance the bill.
“With Roe v. Wade on the precipice and abortion access under attack in New Hampshire by anti-choice politicians like Governor Chris Sununu and his Republican colleagues, there has never been a more urgent time for Congress to codify reproductive rights into federal law,” said Zandra Rice Hawkins, Executive Director of Granite State Progress. “Abortion access is a human right, and reproductive freedom is a core Granite State value. Since the passage of Sununu’s abortion ban and the defunding of the family planning program, Granite Staters have shown up and made their voices heard, definitively rejecting efforts by lawmakers to criminalize physicians and take away our reproductive rights. We are grateful to our full Congressional delegation for their steadfast support of reproductive freedom and independence, and strongly urge the U.S. Senate to do what is necessary to protect abortion for all Granite Staters and all Americans.”
“The urgency of the WHPA passage simply cannot be overstated,” said Josie Pinto, Executive Director of the Reproductive Freedom Fund of New Hampshire. “In the nearly fifty years since Roe v. Wade was decided, efforts to restrict abortion access have only increased. This year, New Hampshire passed its first ever gestational abortion ban – the most restrictive piece of legislation relating to abortion in our state’s history. Our fund was already fighting against barriers to abortion care for patients, and these new restrictions make it even harder for Granite Staters to access the reproductive health care they need. We need Congress to take definitive action to protect abortion rights as soon as possible, and then work to expand access for patients and remove other barriers to care such as high cost and limited provider availability.”
A poll conducted earlier this year by Hart Research Associates showed that a majority (61%) of voters believe abortion rights across the country should be protected with a new federal law like WHPA. In New Hampshire, a poll conducted by UNH in July showed that recent legislation passed by Governor Chris Sununu to ban abortions at 24 weeks with virtually no exemptions and mandate medically unnecessary ultrasounds for all patients is highly unpopular.
Since 2011, anti-abortion lawmakers have pushed more than 500 restrictive laws through state legislatures that make abortion difficult and, sometimes, impossible to access. These abortion restrictions and bans are becoming more extreme—and are disproportionately harming people who already face discriminatory obstacles to health care, particularly Black, Indigenous, and other people of color, those working to make ends meet, women, young people, people with disabilities, immigrants, people living in rural communities, and members of the LGBTQI+ community.
The impact is devastating. Today, nearly 90 percent of American counties are without a single abortion provider, and 27 cities have become “abortion deserts” because people who live there must travel 100 miles or more to reach a provider. In New Hampshire, there are only four clinics to serve more than 1.3 million residents, and the Executive Council voted to defund those providers last week by rejecting the contracts for the state’s Family Planning program.
You can learn more about the Women’s Health Protection Act HERE.
Granite State Progress is a progressive advocacy organization that addresses issues of immediate state and local concern. Granite State Progress works as a communications hub for the progressive community to provide a strong, credible voice in advancing progressive solutions to critical community problems. Visit https://granitestateprogress.org/ to learn more.