For Immediate Release

United Methodist Women Decries Attack on Women’s Reproductive Health

United Methodist Women Decries Attack on Women’s Reproductive Health
At the United Methodist Women International Women's Day vigil in Nashville, Tennesse, 2013.

United Methodist Women, the largest network of women of faith, today decried increasing efforts to limit a family’s right to make deeply personal reproductive health care decisions. Following passage of anti-abortion measures in Alabama, Ohio and other states, the network of women lay leaders issued the following statement:

“United Methodist Women, like The United Methodist Church, affirms the ability of women and families to have access to comprehensive reproductive health care and information so that they can make deeply personal reproductive health care decisions.1 United Methodist Women, like The United Methodist Church, believes that ‘Governmental laws and regulations do not provide all the guidance required for the informed Christian conscience. Therefore, a decision concerning abortion should be made only after thoughtful and prayerful consideration by the parties involved, with medical, family, pastoral and other appropriate counsel.’2 Also, United Methodist Women, like The United Methodist Church ‘recognize[s] that tragic conflicts of life with life that may justify abortion, and in such cases we support the legal option of abortion under proper medical procedures by certified medical providers.’

“Alabama’s new law banning abortion is the latest and most egregious affront to these principles and a woman’s right to personal decision-making.  

“Sadly, Alabama’s new law banning abortions lays bare a contempt for girls and women that is hard to fathom or deny. It is unconscionable that legislators could hold the lives of girls and women in such low esteem that they would not allow exceptions in cases of rape or incest and enact harsher penalties on doctors who performed abortions than on the rapists or incestuous pedophiles.

“It is important to note that Alabama’s law did not occur in a vacuum. Across the country, women’s right to reproductive health care is being curtailed, as legislatures force the closing of women’s health care facilities and courts block women’s access to contraception through their employer-based health care benefits. These actions make unwanted pregnancies more likely to occur and tragic pregnancies more difficult to end.

“As United Methodist Women, we are equally bound to respect the sacredness of life and well-being of the mother and the unborn child.3 Women are crying out for not only their own survival but also the survival of their families and communities. They deserve access to services and care that empower their personal decision-making. We are called to eradicate systems of oppression and marginalization that inhibit women’s well-being.”4


1“The Right to Health Care,” ¶162 V, The Book of Resolutions of The United Methodist Church, 2016. 
2“Abortion,” ¶161 K, The Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church, 2016.
3“Abortion,” ¶161 K, The Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church, 2016.
4“Maternal Health: The Church’s Role,” ¶3203, The Book of Resolutions of The United Methodist Church, 2016.

Posted or updated: 5/17/2019 12:00:00 AM

United Methodist Women Communications

Contact:
Yvette Moore
Director of Communications and Marketing
phone: (212) 870-3822
ymoore@unitedmethodistwomen.org


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