WGA urges productions to avoid states likely to ban abortions

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WGA urges productions to avoid states likely to ban abortions

The Writers Guild of America is urging TV and movie productions to boycott states likely to ban abortions if the Supreme Court overturns the landmark Roe v. Wade decision.

The powerful union’s two branches, based in the east and west coasts, both released similar statements urging members to “consider the law” in each state before agreeing to work there.

In New York, the WGA’s east coast branch issued a statement Thursday saying its governing council “condemns” the expected Supreme Court decision that was teased in a controversial leak to Politico.

“As a union, it is our duty to protect workers’ access to quality medical care, including reproductive care,” the Manhattan-based branch said.

The union even speculated that the legal change could “place other fundamental rights at risk, including marriage equality and legal birth control.”

“We call on our employers to carefully consider the law in each state, especially bans on abortion, when choosing where they conduct business,” the east-coast branch said.

That came a day after the west branch, based in Los Angeles and covering Hollywood productions, issued a similar advisory.

Members of the Screen Actors Guild join striking writers in a display of unity outside Fox Studios on January 28, 2008 in Los Angeles, California.
The two branches of the guild released similar statements.
Getty Images
Members of the Screen Actors Guild join striking writers in a display of unity outside Fox Studios on January 28, 2008 in Los Angeles, California.
The WGA’s eastern branch said they are working to “protect workers’ access to quality medical care.”
Getty Images

“Women’s rights are human rights, and any laws that ban or limit a woman’s right to choose are dangerous and set a precedent for further erosion of our collective civil rights,” the union said.

“We call on our employers to consider the laws of each state when choosing production locations to ensure that our members will never be denied full access to reproductive healthcare.”

Chief Justice Roberts on Tuesday confirmed that the leaked draft — published Monday night by Politico — was genuine, but stressed that “it does not represent a decision by the Court or the final position of any member on the issues in the case.”

People rally for abortion rights after an anti-climb protective fence was installed outside of the U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, U.S., May 5, 2022.
People rally for abortion rights after an anti-climb protective fence was installed outside of the Supreme Court building in Washington on May 5, 2022.
REUTERS/Leah Millis

If the final decision does overturn the landmark 1973 ruling, 26 states are likely to restrict abortion, according to The Guttmacher Institute, a New York-based pro-choice research organization.

Those states are Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming. 

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