On Saturday, a few dozen Santa Barbarans gathered in De la Guerra Plaza to show our opposition to the recent abortion bans and give our support for Planned Parenthood. We sent letters to abortion providers in the states under assault, created signs, and made our voices heard. It felt like a team in training for the long haul ahead.

And a long haul it will be. A woman’s right to make her own decision about her health is as precarious as it’s been since before Roe v. Wade a generation ago. Missouri, Georgia, and Alabama are moving swiftly to deny millions of women the access they deserve. Already 25 million women live in a state where abortion could be outlawed if Roe is overturned. That’s over 25 million people. While abortion bans impact everyone who can become pregnant, they hit people of color and those who are struggling to make ends meet the hardest — the people who already face barriers to accessing good health care.

I’m writing this letter because many of my friends read the news with dismay and ask me how they can help. Here’s how: Support your local Planned Parenthood. By giving your money or your time to Planned Parenthood California Central Coast or Planned Parenthood Central Coast Action, the advocacy organization of which I serve on the board, you are standing up for women across the country, especially women in the South.

While we are bracing ourselves for the months ahead, we are stronger than ever. If you support women’s reproductive rights, here is your invitation. Now is the time. Millions of women need you.


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