It has been a busy fall for our Reproductive Health Access Network! In addition to hosting Cluster meetings in almost all of our states, our Network members have been engaging in more advocacy than ever before.
In early October, at this year’s American Academy of Family Physician’s (AAFP) Congress of Delegates (the governing body of the organization, with a structure that is similar to the U.S. Senate) a group of nearly 30 Network leaders gathered in New Orleans and successfully advocated for the passage of four reproductive health resolutions:
– Resolution 408: Reduce maternal mortality
– Resolution 506: Removing REMS categorization on Mifepristone
– Resolution 507: Oppose the criminalization of self-induced abortion
– Resolution 509: Opposed fetal personhood terminology in governmental policies and legislation
Network advocates also successfully opposed Resolution 508: “Elective Abortions,” which urged the AAFP to support 20-week abortion bans. Engaging in advocacy efforts within the AAFP is a powerful way for our members to use their voices as clinicians to encourage their professional organization to take a pro-choice public stance on reproductive health care and access issues.
That same week, AAFP leaders also participated in a daylong community organizing and leadership building training, facilitated by Miriam Yeung, MPA. Miriam is an organizer and longtime reproductive justice advocate, who formerly led the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum. Thanks to Miriam, our leaders left the training better equipped to serve as proud advocates for reproductive and abortion care within the AAFP and beyond it.
Later that month, RHAP Network members came together once more at the North American Forum on Family Planning, a national conference of family planning providers, researchers, and advocates from all different disciplines. We hosted a breakfast for 30 of our Cluster leaders, as well as our annual National Network gathering. The turnout this year was higher than ever before – we had 90 clinicians from across the country join us to network and strategize with their colleagues!
The Reproductive Health Access Network is RHAP’s community of over 2,300 primary care clinicians who mobilize to expand access to abortion, contraception, and miscarriage care in their primary care settings. Network members engage in training, advocacy, and peer support both locally and nationally. The Network currently has 21 Clusters, or chapters, of clinicians who engage in Network activities in their local communities. Currently, we have Clusters in 20 states. If you are a clinician and would like to be connected with your local Cluster, or would like to start one in your state, please email Laura Riker, RHAP Senior Program Manager.