I’m reaching out to you personally with some important news. As you read this, know that our NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio team will always be right here working for you in Ohio.
On June 28, NARAL Pro-Choice America’s board of directors voted to fully nationalize the organization, by eliminating ties to all 11 independent state affiliate organizations, including NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio—a major change in the 50-year structure of the organization. We are disappointed by this decision, especially as it was made without our input and against our recommendation. We are troubled that a new DC-concentrated restructure will not leverage the strength of state-based organizations like NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio, who has worked with our trusted partners to protect abortion access in our state.
Regardless of the decision by NARAL Pro-Choice America, I want you to know that NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio is strong and remains committed to you and our work together to protect abortion access in Ohio.
As state-based advocates for reproductive freedom, NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio envisions a world where everyone can access abortion care safely, affordably, and locally without punishment, stigma, or judgment. Every day the NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio team wakes up and goes to work to ensure you and each and every Ohioan has the ability to make decisions that are best for themselves and their families—to decide if, when, how, and with whom to have a child—and to make sure they have the resources they need to do so. We believe this is the only path to build thriving, equitable communities where all can live with dignity and equality.
You know our work. We have worked with abortion clinics and our other in-state partners to maintain abortion access in Toledo, Dayton, Cleveland, Akron, Columbus and Cincinnati—despite a decade long effort by anti-choice governors, legislators and attorneys general leveraging their power to eliminate that access. We have passed local ordinances protecting abortion clinics from targeted harassment and violence, and supporting abortion access. Our field team contacted hundreds of thousands of voters in the last election and continue to work each and every day in communities across the state to ensure the voices of pro-choice Ohioans are heard in the statehouse and across our great state.
These important victories came after years of constant grassroots organizing, collaborative coalition building, tenacious policy advocacy, and strategic electoral field work on the ground in our state. But there is more work to be done.
Now more than ever, we are asking for your continued partnership and support. While all NARAL affiliates are independent organizations, we believe we are strongest when we work collaboratively, sharing resources, wisdom, and insights to further the fight for reproductive freedom. We strive to be state-based, grassroots organizations that are trusted, connected and directly accountable to the people in our respective states.
To meet the challenges of this moment, NARAL affiliates are committed to working together as a collaborative and collective network, sharing ideas and resources as we continue to work to protect and expand reproductive rights and abortion access in our respective states and communities. Regardless of what the national entity does, we will remain connected with our state-based sibling organizations across the country and are exploring legal pathways to do so.
We know—because we do it every day—the fight for reproductive freedom is in the states and that fight is best fought and won from the ground up. With the U.S. Supreme Court poised to gut or overturn Roe v. Wade within the next year, the work on the ground in the states to protect and expand access to safe, legal abortion care is more important than ever before. We must meet the challenge by doing all we can to keep NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio’s work to protect and abortion access in our state going strong.
This is just the beginning of an important dialogue, and our entire team is looking forward to continuing the discussion with you in the weeks to come.
For choice, forever,