The battle over abortion pills: How will women’s reproductive rights in California be impacted?


Preston Elliott

Abortions pills are provided by pharmaceutical companies such as Rite Aid and CVS.

Earlier this month in Texas, federal judge Matthew Kacsmaryck called to suspend the FDA’s approval of the abortion pill ‘mifepristone’. Soon after this ruling, a Washington federal judge, Thomas Rice, opposed this and ordered seventeen Democratic-led states and D.C. to keep the pill available.

“Abortion is an extremely controversial topic in our nation right now. We need to work together to find a solution that applies to all,” said Gyan Bhambhani (‘23).

Because of the federal court’s decision to partially block Kacsmaryck’s ruling, the abortion pill mifepristone has been temporarily taken off the market until further hearing. The pill can no longer be sent to buyers through the mail, and a stricter limit on when the pill can be used was set.

“I believe that this puts people who are at risk of getting pregnant in danger, because many families are unable to afford a child or their body cannot physically take a child,” said Jaymie Gardner (‘23)

There are no bans on abortion in the state of California, and the state has stockpiled its supply of mifepristone for women from other states seeking help. Last November, voters codified abortion rights into the state constitution, making it such that a nationwide ban would not affect California.

“I feel like it would make it really hard for them to live their lives if and it will be hard for them to have to go through labor and not having access to abortion pills makes life even harder. It is their choice to go into labor or not,” said Sachith Sandeep (‘24).

California itself made its own laws to further protect abortion rights last year with the formation of the Reproductive Freedom Alliance. These laws provide funding for abortion clinics, and better healthcare for women inside and outside of the state getting an abortion.

“I think everyone should have the right to make their own decisions about their body and healthcare,” said Catie Nielson (‘24). 

Overall, the issue of abortion continues to be a divisive topic that afflicts the nation, with differing voices advocating for varied legislative efforts and initiatives. At the end of the day, students in Pleasanton and around the country must wait, watch, and listen for any and all developments.