Dozens of people gathered in downtown Calgary Sunday to support abortion rights.
Protestors in Calgary were taking a stand regarding Roe v. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on abortion law that’s on the brink of being overturned.
Besty Jameson was one of those attending. She was born in Texas 75 years ago.
As a college student she was part of the civil rights movement and the fight to get women access to abortions.
On Sunday the retired University of Calgary professor was once again defending women’s rights to choose.
“I feel tired. I sometimes feel like I am re-fighting every fight I thought I had won in the 60s and 70s,” Jameson said. “I am also heartened that there are still people who believe strongly in women’s rights and we are here to continue the struggle.”
Jameson said it makes her feel heartsick to think what might happen to women in states like Texas if the Supreme Court strikes down the constitutional right to abortion.
“I feel angry. I’m furious that people are making laws that will hurt so many women,” Jameson said.
Protestors warned that reproductive rights and abortion access should not be taken for granted in Canada — pointing out many rural communities in Alberta do not have access to abortion clinics.
“There is not enough access to abortion in Alberta, quite frankly,” said rally organizer Adora Nwofor.
“It’s important to show solidarity with people who have uteruses stateside, because Roe v. Wade is a very important piece of policy and it needs to be codified. States do not need to make decisions on our uteruses and we are here to say that in Calgary we will not accept people making choices for our bodies,” Nwofor said.
Heather Hastie was at the rally with her teenage daughter and her husband. She said it’s important for Canadians to stand in solidarity with women in the U.S. and be on guard for what could happen here.
“I am worried that there are forces at play right now that want to restrict a woman’s right to choose in Canada – I don’t see it being just an American thing,” Hastie said. “It’s something we have to worry about in Canada.
“We need to be vigilant and let people know that the majority of Canadians actually do believe in choice.”
In Alberta, the province pays for abortions, but there are just three clinics that offer elective abortion procedures and none are located outside of Calgary and Edmonton.