"If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor." — Desmond Tutu 
Earlier this month at the 2022 National Association of Black Journalists/National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NABJ/NAHJ) convention I served on a panel about the connection between abortion access and voting rights, one of the journalists in the audience asked me, how do reporters present both sides of this story. Well, in my opinion, abortion access is not up for debate. 
I don’t believe that there are two sides. Either you believe that a person has the human right to control their own body, or you don’t. Politicians and judges who want to tell you what decisions you can make about your fertility want control over your humanity. They are not concerned about your safety, your family, or your life. Black women in America have lived through generations of other people telling us what we can or cannot do with our bodies. Interestingly, the media did not see the need to report both sides of our story; equal time didn’t become important until we got to this battle around abortion rights and access.  
The media can tell the story by reporting the facts - abortion is safe, a vital part of reproductive health, and a birthing person’s decision. When reporters feel the need to give a platform to anti-abortion, anti-women extremists, they are inadvertently giving a platform to white supremacy, hatred, and misinformation. 
In Our Own Voice, along with 600 physicians, faith groups, abortion advocates, lawyers, and nonprofits recently signed on to a letter calling on the media to stop giving airtime and ink to anti-abortion extremists.  
As Black women, we cannot continue to give power and voice to our oppressors. It is dangerous and threatens our lives and the future of our families. 

In Solidarity,

Marcela Howell
President & CEO
In Our Own Voice: National Black Women's Reproductive Justice Agenda
Abortion Access Across the States

The SCOTUS decision to overturn Roe v. Wade eliminated a person’s right to abortion. This ruling opened the floodgates for anti-abortion legislation at the state level.

Prior to the decision, 13 states had “trigger ban” laws in place and another 13 had the potential to ban abortion access. Since August 8, several trigger bans and pre-Roe bans have taken effect; In some states, new bans have been introduced; some bans are still under litigation or in flux.

Join Our Government Affairs Team
We're hiring! We are currently in search of a Vice President of Government Affairs. If you’re interested or know of a qualified candidate, be sure to check out the job description and apply or share it with your networks!
In Our Own Voice will host a series of panels ahead of the 2022 midterm elections. This first conversation airing on Aug. 31 is focused on discussing the State of Reproductive Justice. Moderated by Marcela Howell who will be joined by MSNBC Commentator Brittany Packnett-Cunningham, Deon Haywood - Executive Director of Women with a Vision, and Paris Hatcher - Executive Director of Black Feminist Future. Be sure to tune in! 
Abortion Access + Voting Rights is a Human Rights Crisis Panel
Earlier this month at the 2022 NABJ-NAHJ Convention and Career Fair, Marcela Howell, president & CEO of In Our Own Voice, and Lupe Rodríguez, Executive Director of Latina Institute, led a discussion moderated by Brie Jackson from NBC News surrounding the SCOTUS decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, how abortion access is tied to voting rights, and what this means for women of color who are disproportionately impacted. If you missed it, you can watch it here:
Building a Bolder and Brighter RJ Future
Earlier this month, the Next Generation Leadership Institute kicked off the fellowship program with the 2022 Orientation in Washington DC. Orientation served as an introductory guide for students to grow their campus advocacy efforts and leadership through the Reproductive Justice lens. Learn more about the incoming fellow’s orientation experience here.
In Our Own Voice is proud to partner with organizations that work 24/7/365 to advance Reproductive Justice on a state level. Take a look at our partners in action:
All Hands on Deck!

The Afiya Center is a calling on folks who are interested in volunteering to advocate for issues impacting Black womxn and girls in Texas. Join the fight for maternal health, HIV support, and Black wellness. Get involved with the All Hands on Deck initiative.
AAPI and Black Unity Art Contest 2022

The California Healthy Nail Salon Collaborative (CHNSC) and Black Women for Wellness (BWW) are proud to partner and present the Asian American and Black Unity Art Contest 2022: Solidarity, Trust and Community Health. CHNSC and BWW invite artists to create art pieces and share images that reflect the togetherness, unity, strength and humanity of our communities despite efforts to keep us divided.
NOURISH Postpartum Doula Request Form 

The NOURISH Postpartum Doula Training Program was created by Black Women’s Health Imperative to promote health and wellbeing during all phases of the postpartum period. If you are a pregnant or newly parenting individual and are interested in receiving FREE services from a Nourish doula, please complete the following survey. 

Launched in January 2022, the #SayHERName Justice Fund accepts applications and awards grants on a rolling basis. The fund helps Black women, girls and gender-expansive folx who have been the victim of gender-based violence in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Cleveland. In May 2022, New Voices expanded the fund to cover abortion access and care, including travel costs to reach care in another state. Apply now to receive help with rent, mental health services, medical bills, basic hygiene products, and more.
HIV/AIDS Awareness Day Community Conversation

In recognition of Southern HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, Dázon Dixon Diallo joined Kandi Burrus of Real Housewives of Atlanta and musical group Xscape during Gilead Science's Southern HIV/AIDS Awareness Day Community Conversation to have a frank discussion about the current state of the HIV epidemic in the South, where half of all deaths related to HIV take place.
Faith, Advocacy and Religion Symposium

Make plans to attend the Faith, Advocacy and Religion Symposium, presented by SisterReach, Friday, Sept. 9, 2022, from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. CT.

This one-day event brings together renowned religious scholars, laity, social justice activists, community and civic representatives, as well as interfaith leaders.
Leading Initiatives for Trans Equity (LITE) Fellowship

The LITE Fellowship program is designed to invest, enhance, and develop the leadership of Black folks who are Trans and/or who exist outside the binary throughout the state of Georgia.

Fellows will leave the program with skills that will allow them to advocate and culturally organize around Trans reproductive healthcare. This fellowship is specifically an entry point for passionate young (18-35) Black individuals who are Trans or don’t exist within the binary in the state of Georgia to engage in organizing and advocacy work.
Medicaid Assistance

Women with a Vision is offering Medicaid assistance for those who have questions about eligibility and how to enroll.