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Ohioans overwhelmingly support the freedom to make their own reproductive healthcare decisions

October 5, 2022
Democratic Newsroom

COLUMBUS- Following today’s anti-abortion rally at the Ohio Statehouse, State Reps. Michele Lepore-Hagan (D-Youngstown) and Jessica E. Miranda (D-Forest Park) called for action on the Reproductive Freedom Act (HJR 5), their legislation to ensure that Ohioans are able to obtain surgical and medical abortion services, and would codify the right to access and contraceptives. 

82% of Ohioans support some form abortion access. Despite this, Republicans enacted Senate Bill (SB) 23, the 6-week abortion ban, into law in 2019. SB 23 prohibits abortions before most women even know they are pregnant, and contains no exceptions for rape or incest. 

“Ohioans overwhelmingly support the freedom to make your own healthcare decisions, but the Republican supermajority is stripping that right away with extreme anti-abortion legislation,” said Reps. Miranda and Lepore-Hagan. “Our Reproductive Freedom Act would protect against this government overreach and give Ohioans a voice on the right to control their own bodies.”

Rep. Catherine Ingram (D-Cincinnati), co-chair of the Ohio Black Maternal Health Caucus, also urged the General Assembly to focus less on restricting healthcare access and more on addressing the state’s dismal infant and maternal mortality rates.  Ohio ranks 40th in the nation for worst infant mortality rate, and 21st in the nation for highest maternal mortality rate. 

“Our Black mothers and babies are dying every day because they are not getting the healthcare they need. Criminalizing healthcare does nothing to address this issue and will only put more Black women in danger,” said Rep. Ingram. 

HJR 5 still awaits assignment to a House committee and a first hearing.