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Roe vs. Wade and the latest on a potential overturn by SCOTUS

A protestor with their back to the camera holds up a sign that reads ‘My Body My Choice.’

Roe vs. Wade is a landmark ruling that has protected the reproductive rights of women for decades

Thanks to a whistleblower who leaked a major document, it was revealed last week that the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) could possibly overturn the landmark ruling of Roe vs. Wade, which was decided on January 22, 1973.

The ruling has been instrumental for the reproductive rights of millions of people in the US, enabling them to access safe, regulated, and often free abortions and reproductive healthcare.

What we know so far from the leaked draft

In a leaked draft opinion last week, it was revealed that the SCOTUS was planning to overturn nationwide, federal-level abortion rights that were protected by the 1973 ruling, Roe vs. Wade, and the subsequent Planned Parenthood v. Casey ruling.

It’s a shocking decision that jeopardizes the precedent and integrity of a court that has continued growing more and more conservative despite a more liberal social and public sphere.

While not final, the draft, which was penned by Justice Samuel Alito, does threaten to undo five decades of work by grassroots activists, policymakers, lawmakers, and thousands of ordinary people whose stories and experiences pushed this reform forward.

The brief argues that abortion is not a constitutional right and should not be treated as such, despite the implication that it is by extension of bodily autonomy.

signing document official - Roe vs. Wade and the latest on a potential overturn by SCOTUS

How this could set back reproductive rights by decades

Should this ruling be overturned and the precedent reversed, it could endanger the work done over the last fifty years while also negating and overruling other cases that followed it. This is a major setback for millions of healthcare practitioners, activists, as well as regular individuals whose lives will be changed due to this decision.

Roe v. Wade and the SCOTUS is what kept individual states looking to ban abortions and pass anti-abortion laws in check. This includes Florida. But if the ruling is overturned, there are already nearly 26 states that will alter and impose abortion laws.

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