There is no gender equality without abortion access.

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Minnesotans value community; we value taking care of our friends and neighbors, whether they live one street or one state over.

The annual Minnesota Health Department report released on Monday found that while the overall number of abortions performed in the state has decreased to near-record lows, there is an uptick in the number of people from outside Minnesota seeking abortion care here.

The report is a mixed bag, to be sure. The decline in the number of people seeking abortions is driven partially by positive factors, like expanding availability of birth control - especially long-acting methods like the IUD - with little to no out-of-pocket expense. It’s also driven by coercive factors, like state restrictions that block many people from making decisions regarding their own pregnancies.

In short, the decline in the abortion rate reflects two very different scenarios: those who were able to make decisions about their reproductive futures, and those who couldn’t.

At Gender Justice, we know that gender equality cannot exist without meaningful access to comprehensive, quality health care, including abortion, in our own communities. We believe in a Minnesota where everyone is supported in their right to decide when or whether to parent.

That’s why we launched UnRestrict Minnesota. This campaign seeks to educate Minnesotans on the state’s many abortion restrictions - laws out of line with the values AND constitution of Minnesota - and advocate for their repeal. At a time when abortion access is under attack, we’re making sure Minnesota is once again stepping up to lead.