Go to Content Go to Navigation Go to Navigation Go to Site Search Homepage

WASHINGTON, DC — As we near the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade (January 22, 2013), Planned Parenthood stands with women across the country in reinforcing the importance of access to safe and legal abortion.

“As the nation’s leading women’s health care provider and advocate, Planned Parenthood understands that abortion is a deeply personal and often complex decision for a woman to consider, if and when she needs it,” said Cecile Richards, president, Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “A woman should have accurate information about all of her options around her pregnancy. To protect her health and the health of her family, a woman must have access to safe, legal abortion without interference from politicians, as protected by the Supreme Court for the last 40 years.”
Despite abortion being legal, constitutionally protected, and consistently supported by a majority of Americans, opponents of women’s health continue to work tirelessly to chip away at or ban access for women.  Earlier this month, the Guttmacher Institute released a report showing that 43 laws were passed in 19 states last year to restrict access to abortion — the second-highest number of such measures passed in a single year (behind only 2011).
This past November, Americans voted to protect women’s access to health care, yet, within days of the election, Ohio legislators tried to advance bills to practically ban abortion and to prevent women from going to Planned Parenthood health centers for basic health care. Just before the New Year, Michigan governor Rick Snyder signed legislation aimed at shutting down women’s health care providers.

Many anti women’s health politicians who are fighting to end access to safe and legal abortion also want to limit access to birth control.  This is part of a much larger and unrelenting attack on women’s health care. Access to affordable birth control and family planning services help reduce unintended pregnancy and the need for abortion.  In fact, a recent study found that if women have access to birth control of their choosing, at no cost, the abortion rate can be cut by up to 71 percent.

“For 40 years, access to safe and legal abortion has been the law of the land. A majority of Americans oppose efforts to overturn Roe v. Wade, and in November they voted to protect a woman’s ability to make her own personal medical decision without interference from politicians,” said Richards. “Legislators who continue to interfere with a woman’s access to safe and legal abortion do so against the will of their constituents.”

·         According to a 2012 Quinnipiac poll, 64 percent of American voters agree with the Roe v. Wade ruling, up from 60 percent in 2010.
·         According to a post-election poll from the Pew Research Center, 64 percent of voters younger than 30 said that abortion should be legal in all or most cases.
·         According to a Gallup poll of voters in 12 swing states, 39 percent of women cited abortion as the most important election issue for women. Women who cited abortion preferred Obama by a three to one margin. 
·         According to research from the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, nearly three-quarters (74 percent) of Latino registered voters support a woman's ability to make personal, private decisions about abortion.
·         According to a 2012 survey from the Public Religion Research Institute, two-thirds (67 percent) of African Americans believe that abortion should be legal in all or most cases.

As the nation’s leading women's health care provider and advocate, Planned Parenthood works every day to reduce unintended pregnancy and keep women healthy. Planned Parenthood health centers provide health care that helps women prevent an estimated 486,000 unintended pregnancies and 204,000 abortions every year. From courthouses to statehouses to Capitol Hill, Planned Parenthood works to protect access to health care for women across the country — taking action to ensure that women have access to care, no matter what.
If you would like to book a Planned Parenthood spokesperson in advance of the Roe anniversary, please contact the Planned Parenthood media office at 212-261-4433. A 40th anniversary Roe v. Wade Bites and B-roll package including original footage of Planned Parenthood Federation of America President Cecile Richards and Sarah Weddington—the winning attorney in the landmark Roe v. Wade case before the United States Supreme Court—is also available upon request. 


Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation’s largest provider of sex education. With more than 700 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.


Planned Parenthood Federation of America


Planned Parenthood Federation of America media office: 212-261-4433


January 17, 2013


September 07, 2016