Planned Parenthood supporters at a reproductive rights rally in 2011. Photo by Sarah Mirk.
Your rights shouldn’t depend on your zip code. But that’s exactly what’s happened in the United States, where states each treat abortion access, sex education, and birth control coverage differently. In the past decade, anti-reproductive rights groups have stepped up state-by-state campaigns to make it more difficult and expensive for women to get abortions, plus pressured states to roll back funding for birth control.
For the past three years, the Population Institute, an international nonprofit that promotes universal access to family planning education, has rated each state for its support of reproductive rights. The new report came out today and it’s not pretty. Only four states have “A” quality reproductive rights (hooray for New Mexico, California, Oregon, and Washington) while 15 states received a failing grade. Altogether, the Population Institute gave the United States a C for reproductive rights.
The report looked at nine factors to determine each state’s grade. The group points out that while reproductive health advocates have done a solid job recently of reducing the teen pregnancy rate and improving access to health care, numerous states have passed burdensome laws that have forced women’s health clinics to close.
Read the full state-by-state report here.
Related Reading: The Bizarre Tradition of Anti-Choice Christmas Caroling.
Sarah Mirk is Bitch Media’s online editor and has lived in three of the four A-grade states.