Chairwoman Maloney to Introduce Legislation to Create National Public Awareness Campaign on Where and How to Access Abortion Care
Washington, D.C. (Oct. 27, 2022)—Today, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, announced her plans to introduce the Abortion Care Awareness Act of 2022 to establish a national public health, education, awareness, and outreach campaign to provide accurate information about where and how to obtain abortion care, in order to enhance access to these services. The legislation follows the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization and a staff analysis released by the Committee showing that since 2021, congressional Republicans have introduced more than 50 bills to ban or restrict abortion nationwide.
“Every person in the United States, no matter their zip code, should be able to access accurate information on where and how to obtain abortion care,” said Chairwoman Carolyn B. Maloney. “Since the fall of Roe, Republican-led states have rushed to impose draconian bans that are forcing women to travel long distances to seek abortion care and leading to the spread of abortion misinformation intended to deceive patients. Republican politicians have made clear they are not satisfied with state bans—they have introduced a nationwide abortion ban that would put doctors and nurses in prison and take away reproductive freedom from millions of women. The Abortion Care Awareness Act will help ensure that every American can access accurate, comprehensive information to make decisions about the health and economic security of themselves and their families.”
The Abortion Care Awareness Act of 2022 directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services to carry out a coordinated, national public health education, awareness, and outreach campaign to provide information regarding where and how people can access abortion and related health services, the right to travel across state lines to access abortion care, how to identify misinformation about abortion, and more.
The public awareness campaign would be established in consultation with health care professionals, reproductive rights and justice organizations, state and local health departments, and other experts.
The Abortion Care Awareness Act of 2022 is endorsed by more than 35 reproductive rights, reproductive justice, medical, and legal advocacy organizations including Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Center for Reproductive Rights, Power to Decide, NARAL Pro-Choice America, National Women’s Law Center, Physicians for Reproductive Health, In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda, and the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice.
“At a time when anti-abortion lawmakers are peddling disinformation to create chaos and confusion, we need to make sure that everyone, no matter where they live, has access to medically accurate information to make informed health care decisions for themselves — including information on medication abortion,” said Karen Stone, Vice President of Public Policy and Government Relations for Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “We are grateful to Chairwoman Maloney for introducing this timely piece of legislation to expand accessible educational resources on abortion and reproductive health care.”
“As a result of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, abortion is now illegal in 12 states — a number that is expected to grow when state legislatures reconvene in January. The ongoing impact of this decision, compounded by a misinformation campaign sowed by anti-abortion politicians, has made it difficult or impossible for many patients to find access to care,” said Liz Wagner, Senior Federal Policy Counsel at the Center for Reproductive Rights. “Now more than ever, it is absolutely crucial that pregnant people have the information they need to access abortion and related reproductive health care services, and we appreciate Chairwoman Maloney’s continued leadership on this issue.”
“As a doctor who provides comprehensive reproductive health care, including abortion care, I counsel my patients on all their pregnancy options using accurate, evidence-based information. I am so disheartened when I learn that the patients I care for have been provided misinformation about abortion from anti-abortion extremists,” said Dr. Nisha Verma, OB/GYN in Georgia and Fellow with Physicians for Reproductive Health. “Abortion is safe, and our communities need legislation like the Abortion Care Awareness Act that protects them from disinformation and misinformation about abortion care.”
“We live at a time when having accurate and accessible information about abortion care in the United States is more important than ever, including medication abortion care. This legislation rightly empowers and requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services to ensure patients in need of abortion care have reliable information they need to make decisions about their health,” said Kirsten Moore, Director, Expanding Medication Abortion Access (EMAA) Project.
Click here for bill text.
Click here for a factsheet.
Click here for a list of endorsements.