Demonstrators demand security for reproductive rights in Ohio ahead of election
Advocates march around the Ohio Statehouse to promote voting and abortion rights on October 8. Photo by Chantal Brown.
Advocates gathered Saturday at the Ohio Statehouse as a part of the Women’s Wave, a national day designated to march and rally for reproductive rights.
A mix of local activists, medical experts, abortion clinic escorts, and candidates expressed the need for the protection of reproductive rights in Ohio law. Protesters were also countered by advocates from the anti-abortion group Created Equal as they marched downtown.
“Now, imagine the mental health and distress of the physicians caring for these patients. I work with doctors and trainees who can’t provide the care they want without having to consult with an attorney to make sure it’s a life-threatening situation,” Dr. Anita Somani said.
Somani is a local gynecologist. She is also running for state representative in District 11.
“There are bills pending such as the personhood bill that would eliminate the ability of infertility specialists to provide the best care to patients who desperately want a family,” Somani said.
Beyond the pending bills, Tamie Wilson urged the crowd to look at the impact women have on the government.
“Women make over 50% of the decisions,” Wilson said. “You know why? It’s because we influence the men in our lives. We influence our friends. We influence our family. We influence our coworkers. It is time to use your voice.”
Wilson is a candidate to represent Ohio’s 4th District in the U.S. House of Representatives.
“We have informed female tickets for you guys to vote for, and it is time for you to vote and support women,” Wilson said.
Amid all the political discourse, local advocate Anne Marie Morrice wanted people to know what they could do in between elections to support the bodily autonomy movement long-term. She stood in front of the group with her daughter and said her abortion allowed her to be the mother that she is today.
“We have to build community care long-term so that the anti-abortion movement doesn’t have a place in Ohio anymore,” Morrice said. “I wear green because I believe in solidarity with people not just in Ohio, not just the United States, but throughout the world who are fighting and losing their lives because they do not have the right to bodily autonomy.
The crowd marched around Capitol Square and flashed signs back and forth with people from Created Equal.
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