Photos: Women’s March returns in Steamboat
The rally was organized after a Supreme Court leak indicated Roe v. Wade ruling could be in peril
Reproductive rights advocates took to the streets on Sunday, May 15, for what may have been the largest Women’s March on Steamboat yet.
The rally was planned in response to a leaked U.S. Supreme Court decision that indicated the nation’s highest court is poised to overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that protected a the right to an abortion, according to Politico.
About 250 people started on the west end of town near Bud Werner Memorial Library and marched on the sidewalk of Lincoln Avenue to the historic Routt County Courthouse. They carried a myriad of signs with slogans like, “My body, my choice,” and “Abortion is healthcare,” in addition to other colorful phrases.
“There are people here today who were not alive for Roe v. Wade and have taken the right to a safe, legal abortion for granted,” said Routt County Commissioner Beth Melton, in remarks from the courthouse steps. “After the escalating assault on our democracy and our freedoms these past few years, I know we are all exhausted, but we have to keep fighting.”
The final opinion in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization is expected this summer. If Roe is overturned, 13 states have laws on the books that would automatically put bans on abortion, including three that border Colorado.
Terra, who works at Planned Parenthood in Steamboat and asked her last name not be used, praised Colorado’s reproductive rights protections for people of all genders to the crowd. Still, bans in nearby states are forcing more women to come to Colorado for an abortion, which could make care harder to access.
“Somewhere around 50% of our abortion patients are from Texas,” Terra said. “So that means people who are trying to access an abortion who are in the state of Colorado are now competing with appointments from out of state.”
She said Planned Parenthood locations in Steamboat, Fort Collins and Glenwood Springs are expecting to see increased volumes after the decision, as both Utah and Wyoming have so called “trigger laws” that would swiftly put bans in place.
The rally featured several speakers, including Steamboat Springs High School Class of 2022 graduate Adia Clark Lay, who said the first thing they needed to do was get people to register to vote.
“How are we supposed to raise a child on our own if we don’t even have the right to choose?” she asked. “I’m 18 now, so I’ll be voting for my body and my choice.”
To reach Dylan Anderson, call 970-871-4247 or email danderson@SteamboatPilot.com.
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