(Photo credit: Mike Von via Unsplash)

Roe Reversal Fuels Clinic to Keep Abortion Options Open for Angelenos

After the Supreme Court’s decision, abortion providers like Planned Parenthood are ready to serve patients – in more ways than you might assume.

Published Sept. 6, 2022
An exterior view of the Planned Parenthood health center in Inglewood.

Planned Parenthood opened a health center and nearby community center in Inglewood. They provide mental health and reproductive health services. (Ural Garrett for AfroLA)

The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade ended the federally supported right to an abortion. Dozens of states followed suit with restrictions or outright bans on reproductive rights.

Nurse practitioner Kara James said that living in California now as a reproductive-aged woman is something to be grateful for.

A safe haven and a “gift”

“It’s such a gift to be in California,” said James. “Los Angeles and California are stepping up to ensure that we provide care no matter what, and Planned Parenthood is making sure we have providers who are licensed, skilled and provide abortion services. It’s extremely important for us.”

James has been a staunch supporter of the recently opened Planned Parenthood center in Inglewood, where she currently works. The right to choose has been important for her since she was a student at Southern University A & M College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

“I will never forget the old Black male doctor who provided the service for me that changed my life,” explained James. ”It’s hard to believe that we are in a battle today for an actual human right.”

Infographic with abortion statistics by the numbers.

According to a June Guttmacher Instutute report, more than 862,000 abortions were provided nationwide in 2017. California provided about 16% of those procedures.

In response to the end of Roe v. Wade’s protections, California Gov. Gavin Newsom immediately signed a $125 million reproductive health legislation package that expands abortion access for women and aims to protect abortion patients and providers. Newsom signed legislation eliminating out-of-pocket costs for abortion services earlier this year. A $1.5 billion tax credit to draw film production away from anti-abortion states is also in the works.

In addition, the state legislature passed a constitutional amendment to explicitly codify the rights to access abortion and birth control. (The amendment will appear on November’s ballot as Proposition 1.)

Holistic care for Black patients

The Planned Parenthood health center and community center opened weeks after Justice Alito’s opinion was leaked. With the local community in mind, the centers’ rooms are named after Inglewood neighborhoods and are decorated with artwork from local Black artists. According to James, the centers in Inglewood provide support for both body and mind.

“We provide clinical services specifically to address health inequities in the Black community, like prenatal care, which is something we don’t provide everywhere else,” explained James. “There’s also behavioral health care because, as Black folk, we go through hell and high water on a regular basis. So, we have a mental health provider right there in the clinic.” The community center offers doula and family therapy services, she said.

The National Abortion Federation’s hotline, which books lodging and travel for abortion patients traveling out of state, reported a 5,100% increase in plane or bus trips and a 1,400% increase in hotel room bookings in the month after Roe was overturned. James said they’ve already started to see an influx of patients from other states at the health clinic, and they expect an increase down the line.


Finding an abortion provdider near you

  • I Need An A.com

    A map of NAF member facilities by state. NAF members have regular site visits “to ensure they provide the highest quality care.”

  • National Abortion Federation

    A list of the closest abortion clinics that fit your circumstances based on where you live, how far into your pregnancy you are and your age. “With 3 non-personally-identifiable pieces of information (that we don’t collect or store), we’re able to give people seeking abortions the information most relevant to their individual circumstances.”

Abortion funds and financial assistance

  • The Brigid Alliance

    “We book, coordinate and pay for travel, travel expenses, and child care, serving as a single, trusted point of contact for every step of the journey.”

  • National Abortion Federation Hotline Fund

    “The NAF Hotline Fund operates the largest national, toll-free, multi-lingual hotline for abortion referrals and financial assistance in the U.S. and Canada. We provide callers with accurate information, confidential consultation, and referrals to providers of quality abortion care.”

  • Women’s Reproductive Rights Assistance Project (WRRAP)

    “WRRAP is a non-partisan, nonprofit organization assisting women who are financially unable to pay for safe, legal abortions or emergency contraceptives. We work directly with pre-qualified, reputable reproductive health clinics across the U.S. on behalf of the person in need.”

Abortion pills

  • Plan C

    Plan C is “an educational resource for learning about how people in the US are accessing abortion pills and safely managing their own abortions.”

  • Hey Jane

    Hey Jane is a U.S.-based virtual clinic that discreetly ships abortion pills to your home, provides consultation with a medical provider within 24 hours and offers emotional and community support. We provide “care that’s private, safe, supportive, accessible, and convenient—for less than half the average in-clinic cost of a medication abortion.”

  • Women’s Reproductive Rights Assistance Project (WRRAP)

    “WRRAP is a non-partisan, nonprofit organization assisting women who are financially unable to pay for safe, legal abortions or emergency contraceptives. We work directly with pre-qualified, reputable reproductive health clinics across the U.S. on behalf of the person in need.”

Note: Laws surrounding where and how abortion services can be provided are in flux. Be sure to check with individual clinics for specific details on what's available at their facility.

The clinic could attract patients from states like Nevada where women’s reproductive rights are protected yet women lack access as a result of abortion deserts outside of major cities. California is far from states that have restricted or banned abortions, aside from Arizona, so there shouldn’t be much of a bottleneck.

Planned Parenthood and other organizations have spent decades assisting patients trying to access abortion services. The Women’s Reproductive Rights Assistance Project (WRRAP) provides funding for patients seeking abortions in all 50 states and works directly with 700 clinics, doctors and hospitals nationwide. WRRAP Executive Director Sylvia Ghazarian said her group was upset by the Supreme Court’s decision, but quickly got to work to help patients, especially Black patients.

“The majority of individuals, particularly pregnant Black women who are in their first trimesters, are seeking the abortion pill by mail,” said Ghazarian. She said that WRRAP covers the associated costs: the medication itself, shipping and telemedicine visits.

Ghazarian said she feels like the overturning of Roe v. Wade is just the start of stripping away even more reproductive rights. This could disproportionately impact the Black community.

Black women make up 13% of the U.S. population, but the account for more than a third of all abortions performed, according to a BBC report. "Structural inequities — including living on low incomes and limited access to health insurance — all contribute to the higher rates of abortions among people of color,” said Antonia Biggs, a researcher at the Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health, in the report.

Ural Garrett is an Inglewood-based journalist and content curator. His work has appeared on CNN Digital, MTVNews, Complex, TechRadar, LA Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter and more.   

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