On June 24, Roe v. Wade was overturned in a supreme court ruling that will enact outright bans or severe restrictions due to trigger laws. The official decision reversed constitutional protection for abortion nationwide. Meaning, rather than it being a nationally protected right, states would have the power to restrict or outright ban abortion access.
Some of the case by case situations by state are as follows. Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, is a 2018 Mississippi law banning abortion after 15 weeks. Then there’s SB8, Texas’ 2021 law banning abortion after six weeks — enforced by private citizens, who are eligible for up to $10,000 if they sue providers or anyone who helps a patient terminate a pregnancy. This spring, Republican governors from Florida and Arizona signed their own 15-week abortion bans, following Mississippi’s lead. And the day after the Supreme Court draft leaked on May 2, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt signed a six-week ban into law, modeled after Texas’. With the news of the supreme court ruling, 13 states that have “trigger laws” which ban abortion entirely, and another 13 are likely to severely restrict access following this decision.
That’s why abortion providers, advocates, and activists have been preparing for this moment for years. On TikTok, pro-choice accounts disclose their abortion stories, share abortion funds, and remind their followers that reproductive health care includes trans and gender non-conforming people, all in an effort to make sure everyone knows their rights.
Christie Pitney, a nurse-midwife, sexual and reproductive health nurse practitioner, and abortion provider, decided to use her TikTok platform @forwardmidwifery to put a face to the stats and stigma. “[Many people] know that 1 in 4 people with pregnancy potential will get an abortion, but it’s so much more impactful to hear how normal and common abortion is,” she tells Bustle. “My main priority is education and advocacy so everyone will have this knowledge for the rest of their lives.”
For more information about accessing abortion and keeping up with changing laws, follow these TikTok accounts working to educate their followers.
OB-GYN and abortion care doctor @drjeanius not only discusses the impact of abortion bans on her TikTok page, but also educates her 5,000-plus followers on topics like what abortion looks like (by demonstrating on dragon fruit) and how medication abortion works. If you’re looking for a soothing, non-judgmental space to see how OB-GYNs perform endometrial biopsies, cervical dilation, and the tools involved in surgical abortion, @drjeanius is the place to get your answers. @drjeanius also responds to specific questions from followers in her posts — like one about whether progesterone can reverse a medication abortion (spoiler: it can’t).
A full-spectrum doula and clinic escort, @thatabortiondoula talks about abortion both as a public health student and as someone who’s had one. With nearly 8,000 followers, @thatabortiondoula posts about debunking anti-abortion rhetoric and satirical takes on dealing with protestors outside of clinics. In a recap of SCOTUS’ leaked draft decision, @thatabortiondoula posted a three-minute-long TikTok detailing the five things you need to know about abortion rights and what to do if you have an appointment booked.
With over 12,000 followers, the official TikTok account of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio, an offshoot of Planned Parenthood focusing on campaigning, lobbying, and research for reproductive and LGBTQ+ rights, focuses on the political and legal aspects of abortion in the Midwest. Peep their recent videos about states with trigger bans, hearings on new abortion bills, and funding for crisis pregnancy centers.
OB-GYN and author Dr. Jennifer Lincoln, M.D., gives her 2.8 million followers tangible explainers and resources on abortion access. In recent TikToks, she’s done deep-dives into judicial bypass laws, which allow pregnant minors to access abortion without parental involvement; PlanCPills.Org, a website that provides information on mail-order at-home abortion medication by state; and Aid Access, which helps people who can’t get to a local abortion clinic or provider. With a mix of bite-size information on legislation, anatomy lessons, and critiques of the health care system, Lincoln offers expansive, socially aware education for everyone.
Christie Pitney is a midwife and abortion provider who practices across the country. Pitney, who has 3,900 followers on TikTok, works with Plan C Pills, Aid Access, and the Miscarriage & Abortion Hotline offline, and takes that perspective to her online presence. She makes TikToks debunking the fetal heartbeat myth (which gave the Texas abortion ban its name), explaining the legality of ordering abortion pills online, and breaking down options for plus-size folks who need emergency contraception or medication abortions.
Urge is a POC-led reproductive justice organization focusing on youth in the Midwest and South. Their account keeps their nearly 1,000 followers up to date on everything from what Supreme Court nominations mean for reproductive justice to finding local abortion funds in need of support. They also promote resources like their free digital zine SMAshing Stigma, which offers info on self-managed abortions.
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