Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts
105 Chauncy Street, 8th Floor, Boston, MA 02111
Ph: 617.973.6666 Fax: 617.973.6663

wba@womensbar.org       www.womensbar.org

Kristy Lavigne
Women's Bar Association of Massachusetts
Margaret Talmers
Executive Director
Women's Bar Association of Massachusetts
(617) 973-6666

Statement of the Women’s Bar Association in Response to the U.S. Supreme Court Ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization


The Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts is disheartened and devastated by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization to overturn Roe v. Wade and expressly eliminate an individual’s fundamental right to determine whether, when and how to bear a child free from government interference.  The impact of this decision cannot be overstated.  It will be felt for generations to come and will be disproportionately borne by already vulnerable and marginalized groups: low-income individuals and individuals of color.  Equally disturbing and concerning are the decision’s potential implications for certain privacy and LGBTQ+ rights.

In deciding Dobbs, an activist court fulfilled the goal for which its newest members were selected and took the extraordinary step of overturning nearly a half-century of precedent to strip rights away from those who give birth in the United States.  This decision catapults the cause of reproductive justice back to the 1970s and threatens to undercut the monumental strides that we have made toward equality under the law and equality within society. 

While we are disheartened by this decision, we are dedicated to the fight for privacy, equality, and reproductive justice for all.  The WBA previously joined together with many coalition partners to tirelessly advocate, provide testimony, and engage in outreach regarding reproductive rights.  In concert, we helped secure the passage of the ROE Act which ensured equitable access to abortion care in Massachusetts.  As a result of this work, the people of Massachusetts will continue to have access to safe and affordable abortion care. 

Though we have the privilege of living in a state that believes in protecting reproductive rights despite the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling, not all states have that luxury of support from their elected officials.  We need to help those in now-encumbered states by supporting their right to childcare, a living wage, and social justice.  We cannot passively stand by while those who give birth are stripped of fundamental rights and threatened with potential retaliation for accessing reproductive health care elsewhere.

State-level advocacy has never been as important as it is right now.  The WBA calls upon its members and the community at large to get activated, get involved and stay connected to the important legislative policy work that is a cornerstone of our mission.  If you are not a member, please become a member.  We must use this colossal setback as an opportunity to invigorate and energize us.  Together we can help to ensure that Massachusetts remains a leader, not only in reproductive justice, but in the human and civil rights over which this decision casts a long shadow.