AISJ's Statement on Supreme Court Decision Overturning Roe v. Wade
By now, we all know that the Supreme Court voted to strike down Roe v. Wade on Friday, June 24.

One of the pillars of AISJ’s gender equity policy is to value women’s lives. We believe we should improve health outcomes for women by implementing systems to eliminate bias and discrimination in health care and support advancements in health equity that improve health care access and women's health outcomes.

With the recent Supreme Court decision, Alabama’s Human Life Protection Act has become the law of the land. Thanks to the Court, what the state has done is rip away women’s reproductive autonomy and control over their own bodies.

Already, Black women are more likely to live in “contraception deserts” where they can’t find adequate reproductive health care or contraception. In addition, if they do become pregnant, Black women are three times more likely to die from complications surrounding pregnancy than white women. 

Such factors lead Black women to seek abortions at higher rates than other women. The Black women who live in states that will now ban abortion are more likely to suffer illness and mortality because they’ll lack the full range of reproductive health care.

We also must face the fact that 12% of Black women in Alabama are uninsured, which puts them at greater physical and financial risk to carry a child to term. The costs of prenatal care will greatly discourage low-income and uninsured women from seeking care. And even if a woman could qualify for Medicaid, she cannot use public funds to terminate a pregnancy except for a life-saving situation.

A 2021 study showed that denying abortions would increase pregnancy-related deaths by 7% in the first year and 21% in the following years. For Black women, the study predicts that an abortion ban would create a 12% increase in deaths in the first year and a 33% increase in subsequent years.

Meanwhile, Alabama’s foster care system has about 6,000 kids waiting for new parents. There are already children here and now who need homes, and forcing women to bear children will only add to those lists.

On top of that, the process of adopting a child is complex and expensive. Prospective parents must undergo background and housing checks, while children can wait for years to be adopted from foster care. Adoption from a foster care facility can cost up to $2,000, and if a child isn’t coming from the foster system, the cost of adoption can average $30,000. Such costs act as a barrier to getting children into homes, and even more children will need such homes in the future as a result of abortion bans – nevermind the economic and physical costs to a woman who does not want to carry a child to term, even if they eventually will adopt out.

Reproductive rights are an economic and health justice issue. We stand with our sisters who are hurting from this news, and we understand that this decision will serve as a catalyst to undo other progress that has been made over the years. We must remain vigilant and engaged in our political process now more than ever.
About The Alabama Institute for Social Justice: The Alabama Institute for Social Justice (AISJ) works strategically to remove barriers that particularly limit and/or undermine the economic well-being of women and people of color. To learn more about the organization, please visit