Expanding Access to Insurance Coverage for Abortion

We are building a movement of local advocates and elected leaders in cities across the country to stand up for insurance coverage for abortion. We have helped pass local resolutions in support of reinstating abortion funding in Cambridge, Mass.; Cook County, Ill.; Ithaca, NY, Madison, Wis.; New York; Philadelphia (Board of Health); San Francisco; Seattle; and Travis County, Texas.

Combatting Crisis Pregnancy Centers

Crisis Pregnancy Centers (CPCs) use deceptive tactics to dissuade pregnant women from choosing abortion. The National Institute partners with advocates to protect consumers from the fraudulent practices of CPCs by passing legislation or resolutions. We’re committed to ensuring that every woman receives unbiased medical information and comprehensive reproductive health care, including abortion. Read about our success in Austin, Texas; Baltimore and Montgomery County, Md.; Chapel Hill, NC; Dane County, Wis.; New York; and San Francisco.

Protecting Access to Clinics

The National Institute works with partners to develop local policy strategies to address clinic violence and continues to encourage clinics and advocates to seek appropriate policy remedies for threats to patients and clinics in communities. We have supported advocates in enacting ordinances to protect access to clinics in Colorado; Columbus, Ohio; Massachusetts; New York; Pittsburgh; San Francisco; and Spokane, Wash.

Introducing Comprehensive Women’s Agendas

Comprehensive women’s legislative agendas recognize the connection among policies that advance women’s economic stability, equality, and access to reproductive health care. The National Institute worked closely with partners and lawmakers in Georgia, New York, and Pennsylvania to introduce state-specific comprehensive women’s agendas, many components of which were signed into law.

Influencing the Public Debate on Abortion

Most Americans agree that abortion should be safe, legal, and accessible across the country — but these views are not fully reflected in the public debate. We are identifying strategies and resources to encourage members of the public to make their views known, keep them informed, and get them engaged in the collective fight to protect reproductive rights. See our recent original public opinion research on the connections between reproductive rights and women’s lives.

Reversing the Trend on Reproductive Rights

Our policy counsel track policy and legislative efforts to improve access to abortion and other reproductive health care services, and advise local and state advocates across the country in order to reverse years of anti-choice legislation. See our 2016 year-in-review publication, Gaining Ground: Proactive Reproductive Health and Rights Legislation in the States.

In 2016, advocates and legislators made great gains in promoting legislation that affirmatively supports women’s reproductive and sexual health, rights, dignity, and autonomy. The number of proactive reproductive rights and health bills, both proposed and enacted, almost tripled from 2014 to 2016, with 191 pieces of proactive legislation in 36 states and the District of Columbia, 80 of which became law.

While the dominant media narrative has focused, understandably, on state-level attacks on reproductive rights, state-level advocates and lawmakers across the country are making progress in protecting women’s rights and expanding access to quality reproductive and sexual health care in their states. Read the full report.

Training Youth Leaders

For nearly 20 years, the TORCH program has been nationally recognized for its peer education, leadership training, and youth-directed advocacy in New York City. Read more about the TORCH Program.