Since the recent Dobbs vs Jackson Women’s Health decision and subsequent overturn of Roe vs Wade, many states are weighing the possibilities of enacting and enforcing abortion bans, which will impact its citizens in many detrimental ways. These rulings have brought a laser focus to the reproductive health community and opened the floor for ways to support reproductive justice in a variety of ways. Among prominent organizations in our field, the American Board of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ABOG) has received requests to move its headquarters out of Texas. A statement issued on the ABOG website regarding the Texas SB4 and SB8 legislation reads that, while understanding the reasons for such requests, they will remain in situ. The decision not to relocate to a different geographic location was not undertaken lightly in part because abortion restrictions could feasibly be further enacted anywhere across the country depending on prevailing political winds, and such a move may be seen as abandonment of those Obstetrician-Gynecologists and other reproductive health practitioners who remain and fight for patient rights. Additionally, the economic impact of moving to another state will not solve current national issues regarding reproductive health.
In a similar vein, the ASRI is choosing to hold the 2024 meeting in Houston, Texas. While initially concerned about contributing financially to a state that clearly seeks to limit reproductive autonomy of its citizens, the Council and Committee members support a show of solidarity to reproductive healthcare providers and advocates in the state of Texas.
The ASRI is committed to creating a safe space for pregnant attendees. We understand the concerns of members and meeting attendees who may be pregnant at the time of the meeting; a survey about hybrid attendance will be distributed to help us prepare for the meeting.
The ASRI recognizes reproductive and abortion care as essential healthcare, and the rights of pregnant people as human rights. The ASRI stands in solidarity with ACOG, SMFM and other professional societies in condemning the recent Supreme Court decision as inequitable, advocating for reproductive health decisions to be kept between the individual and their health care provider.
Please contact the Council/Committee Members with any questions or concerns.
Anna Powell, MD MSc Committee Chair for Public Affairs
Irina Burd, ASRI PresidentASRI Council