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Doctors and Organizers Fight to Preserve Abortion Access as AZ Upholds 1864 Ban

I didn’t go to medical school just to go to prison, says DeShawn Taylor, an OB-GYN and abortion provider.

In Arizona, Republican lawmakers have blocked efforts by Democrats to repeal an 1864 law — first written before women had the right to vote and recently revived by the state’s Supreme Court — that bans nearly all abortions under threat of criminal penalties including jail time. To respond, we host a trio of reproductive justice advocates in Arizona. Dr. DeShawn Taylor, an OB-GYN physician, abortion provider and the CEO of the only Black woman-operated abortion clinic in Arizona, emphasizes that her practice “will continue to provide abortions until we are made to stop,” but warns that in the future “abortions likely will not happen in Arizona because of those criminal penalties.” Meanwhile, organizers like Chris Love and Alejandra Pablos are fighting back. Love is a spokesperson for Arizona for Abortion Access, a coalition of reproductive rights organizations working to put a constitutional amendment on abortion on the state’s upcoming November ballot. The petition for the proposed ballot measure is still collecting signatures. “We know what we want: We want people to have the care that they need,” concludes Pablos, who organizes for reproductive, racial and immigrant’ rights.

Please check back later for full transcript.