Almost as soon as Roe v. Wade legalized abortion nationwide, the Hyde Amendment banned Medicaid funding for most abortions. Its creator, the late Republican congressman Henry Hyde, once famously lamented, “I would certainly like to prevent, if I could legally, anybody having an abortion, a rich woman, a middle-class woman, or a poor woman. Unfortunately, the only vehicle available is the…Medicaid bill.” Because of funding restrictions—in addition to the restriction on Medicaid funding, many private insurance plans don’t cover abortion care—and because of restrictions imposed on abortion clinics and providers in the decades since Roe, access to abortion in America has long been dependent on socioeconomic status and on geography.
In order to close the gap between rights and access, a grassroots network of abortion funds has sprung up across the country, helping women pay for the procedure, as well as, in many cases, associated travel, housing, and child care costs. Abortion clinics across the country also fight local, state, and national restrictions on their work to provide care. In recent years, networks of abortion doulas have been established to provide to support to those who have abortions. And across the country, organizing and advocacy groups fight to change policies in order to make abortion and other reproductive health care more accessible. The map above includes a sampling of the hundreds of organizations doing that work. Many of the groups named shared with The Nation what has changed about their work in the last five years. Hover over the icons to learn more.
Editor’s Note: As we noted in the text above, we designed this map as an illustration of the different kinds of abortion-access activism taking place across the country. After publishing this map, we received feedback that it doesn’t include every group doing this vital work. Indeed! Comprehensive lists of abortion clinics, abortion funds, and abortion doula networks exist online, at the National Abortion Federation, Abortion Care Network, Planned Parenthood, National Network of Abortion Funds, and Full-Spectrum Doula Circle. For more complete lists of groups doing this important work, please consult those sites. On our map, we hope you’ll hover over the icons to learn more about the groups we included, and dive into the rest of the special issue, too.
Research by Alice Markham-Cantor and Molly Minta
Map production by Josh Leeman