US Supreme Court Overturns Roe v. Wade
Anti-abortion ideologues on the US Supreme Court just explicitly overturned Roe v. Wade.
The decision will have enormous consequences for pregnant people across a wide swath of US states, who will now find it extremely difficult—and in many cases impossible—to get the care they want and need. Marginalized communities will be hit the hardest by this far-reaching decision.
Statement from Dr. Herminia Palacio, Guttmacher Institute President and CEO
"The US Supreme Court has taken the radical step of overturning Roe v. Wade outright, thus unleashing uncertainty and harm onto people asking for nothing more than to exercise their fundamental right to bodily autonomy.
"Roe v. Wade was under attack since the moment it was decided in 1973. While imperfect in its ability to protect reproductive rights, as evidenced by the steady erosions of these rights in many states, Roe enabled tens of millions of people in the United States to decide their own future and protect their well-being.
"Without Roe, 26 states are certain or likely to ban abortion to the fullest extent possible, including 13 states that have "trigger" laws in place that will automatically enact bans—some within days or even hours of today’s decision.
"Decades of research consistently show that abortion bans and restrictions don’t reduce unintended pregnancy or demand for abortion, and they certainly do not help people improve their health. Rather, they impose significant hurdles to obtaining care, causing stress for people in need of abortion and leading some to experience forced pregnancy and all its troubling consequences.
"Evidence also shows the disproportionate and unequal impact abortion restrictions have on people who are already marginalized and oppressed—including Black and Brown communities, other people of color, people with low incomes, young people, LGBTQ communities, immigrants and people with disabilities.
"This decision comes when the need for abortion is actually growing in the United States. The 930,000 abortions obtained across the country in 2020 represent the first sustained increase in abortion in almost three decades—and more than one in three of these abortions were obtained in states that are now certain or likely to ban abortion.
"Our hearts go out to the patients and providers seeking a path forward. We are grateful for abortion funds, practical support groups and many others who have been hard at work to help individuals needing an abortion overcome the many financial and logistical hurdles they face.
"While much has been lost today, the fight is far from over. The anti-abortion movement is already pushing for a national abortion ban. All of us seeking to defend policies that support bodily autonomy must be ready to meet them with all we have. We must protect abortion rights and access in as many states as possible and achieve federal legislation to ensure that anyone, anywhere who needs an abortion can get one freely and with dignity."
Key data points and resources:
- The long-term decline in abortions in the United States that started 30 years ago has reversed—underscoring that the need for abortion care in the United States is growing just as the US Supreme Court has overturned Roe v. Wade.
- 13 states have trigger bans in place that will now be set in motion to ban abortion. Read details on timelines, mechanisms and exceptions.
- In total, 26 states are certain or likely to ban abortion without Roe.
- Snapshot of current abortion policies in each state is available via our interactive map.
- States have enacted 43 abortion restrictions in 2022, bringing the total to 1,381 since Roe was decided in 1973.
Media OfficeGuttmacher Institute