TAMPA, Fla. — Many abortion-rights advocates are now concerned about the potential health care disparities if Roe v. Wade is overturned.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, Black women have the highest number of abortions nationwide, slightly above white and Hispanic women.
What You Need To Know
- A draft Supreme Court opinion was leaked this week that indicates justices are preparing to overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark case that legalized abortion in the U.S.
- Abortion-rights activists say they are concerned about potential health care disparities if the ruling it overturned
- Dr. Jennifer Griffin says poor women would be affected most if the Supreme Court did away with Roe v. Wade
However, Dr. Jennifer Griffin said the disparity will now focus more on class and less on race.
“You have to consider that women with means will always be able to fly wherever they need to go to get an abortion as long as we don’t make it illegal nationwide," she said. "But poor women are not going to be able to travel to get an abortion and they’re going to be forced to carry pregnancies to term."
When you examine the social determinants of health, Griffin pointed out that, historically, Black women get hit hardest when there are health care disparities.
In this case, abortion isn’t a topic that is talked about often in minority communities, she said.
“That’s a real big problem here,” she said. “In the Black community, traditionally there have been quite a few people who have been against abortion because of religious reasons. That’s why I believe — and I’m not certain, this is my speculation — that there are fewer black activists on the side of pro-choice than what one would normally expect on an issue of civil rights.”
Griffin said without Roe v. Wade in place, those disparities are going to be felt by women of all races.
“This will equalize women regardless of race," she said. "This will stratify women by class, not race. Because there are wealthy Black women who will be able to travel. It’s just a way to stratify people by class and economic constraints. That’s what this is going to do."
The average cost for a surgical abortion at 10 weeks in the United States is $450, according to the Pregnancy Decision Line.
Tampa Bay Abortion Fund volunteer McKenna Kelley said the organization helps women pay for the cost of an abortion. If Roe v. Wade is overturned, the organization will most likely have to pay even more.
“We help people find, or we provide, childcare for people while they get their abortion care.," Kelley said. "Transportation, getting people to a clinic — we transport people to the clinic.
"That is a barrier, especially if they’re gonna need to go out of state to find that care. We’re now not just talking cars, we’re talking planes or long car rides."
The organization had already made preparations for when Florida’s new abortion law goes into effect and now they’re gearing up for the potential overturning of Roe v. Wade.