Virginia is for Reproductive Freedom – Reflecting on 2020

2020 has thrown seemingly non-stop blows. We’ve given witness to countless incidents of police brutality and total disregard for Black and Brown people’s lives. There have been more than 18 million cases and over 321 thousand deaths related to COVID-19 in the United States since January 21, 2020. People have been subject to loss of employment, loss of housing stability, loss of loved ones; and restricted interpersonal relationships. And while the losses of this year can easily overshadow any win, Virginia has fought through to some major victories.  

The Reproductive Health Protection Act (RHPA) was signed into law this year, removing medically unnecessary restrictions that presented barriers for thousands of patients seeking abortion care each year. As a member organization of the Virginia Reproductive Equity Alliance, WWHA worked in coalition to ensure the passage of RHPA, collaborated on an Adopt-A-Clinic initiative that collected and delivered essential items for staff at 15 abortion clinics in the Commonwealth, and most importantly, during a global health crisis, our doors remained open with staff dedicated to ensuring our patients received the essential care they needed. 

Even as the coronavirus has had a devastating impact on all our lives, the well-being of the patients I help care for is at the center of everything I do; even when that means putting my own life at risk. I want to be the one to offer resources and support to those that need it. No matter the circumstances, women will always need sexual and reproductive healthcare that includes access to safe, compassionate, non-judgmental abortion care.  

Jana, Medical Assistant/Patient Advocate 

The very things that have made this year nearly unbearable are also stark reminders of exactly why WWHA works so hard every single day on behalf of Virginians. It is when things are the most uncertain that our patients rely on us the most to provide inclusive, compassionate abortion care in a safe environment. It’s the reason why our frontline health care professionals, who have risked their lives every day for the past year, provide constant care. And it’s the reason why we need your support to continue this critical work.   

My personal philosophy is “we are stronger together” and the amount of progress we made this year only reinforces that fact. We hope that your contribution today will help make 2021 better for not just WWHA but for all those in Virginia who strive for reproductive freedom for all. 

Read more about WWHA’s work in 2020.

Stephanie Nash 

Virginia Advocacy Director