Today’s decision by the Supreme Court to overturn the longstanding precedent in Roe v. Wade is disappointing on a number of levels. It pains me to think that between the celebration of Juneteenth and Independence Day, two holidays that celebrate American freedom, the freedom of women to have bodily autonomy is stripped from them by an unelected branch of government. The question of abortion is a difficult decision that is not undertaken lightly by those facing that choice. However, that question is a private one that The Court has held for nearly four decades as being the solemn province of a woman and those whom she consults regarding her welfare.
As labor activists, we’d be remiss to not see this decision in the same light as the Janus v. AFSCME decision in 2018. That decision overturned 30 years of legal precedent and sought to do irreparable harm to the public sector labor movement. While separate issues, it is difficult to detach one from the other when assessing the impact these decisions will have on working people across the country.
As was our response to the Janus decision, AFT-Maryland will continue to fight for justice in Maryland and in our country. We will join in solidarity with those committed to making this a more equitable world for all of us, and will use every tool at our disposal to make this country live up to its potential and promise. As we continue to organize for justice and democracy in our workplace and in our communities, we must not lose hope in a better tomorrow. If not for ourselves, we must do it for those who will come behind us. Today’s decision may cast a dark cloud, but our work today will make for a brighter tomorrow.
Kenya Campbell, President
photo: Ian Hutchinson / UnSplash license