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06.15.12 - Twenty years ago on June 15, 1992, the Center for Reproductive Rights opened its doors. A small team of lawyers had a vision to start an organization that coalesced around the idea that reproductive rights are fundamental and should be recognized as such from the moment a person is born and throughout one's entire life.
From that moment, the Center embraced a two-pronged approach toward creating such a world. We use relentless legal action at every judicial level, including national, regional, and international courts, to combat laws that prevent doctors from delivering appropriate reproductive health care, restrict access to contraception, deny women safe, legal abortions, or violate any other reproductive rights. Our advocacy campaigns expose gross injustices such as forced sterilization, the discrimination against and abuse of women in hospitals and medical clinics, and the grave consequences of bans on abortions.
This comprehensive strategy has produced many of the most important advances in reproductive rights law across the globe: In the U.S., we've overturned bans on government funding for abortions in states across the country. In Nepal, we've transformed the legal landscape so that a country that once criminalized abortion under all circumstances now—thanks to a historic Supreme Court ruling we secured—guarantees affordable access to abortion services for all women. Globally, we have established as a human rights obligation that governments make sure pregnant women get appropriate and timely prenatal care. And the list goes on and on.
Today we stand at the vanguard of our movement, with enormous stores of experience, deep wells of legal talent, a clear vision for the future—and a bold plan for making that vision real.
Under the leadership of our President and CEO Nancy Northup—globally, we are accelerating our successful campaign to establish, strengthen, and expand protections for reproductive rights in international human rights law.
We're increasing the size of our footprint worldwide, adding regional offices in Nepal and Switzerland to our presence in Colombia, Kenya, and the United States.
We're redoubling our trailblazing efforts to combat maternal mortality, unsafe abortion, forced sterilization, and violence and abuse in maternity clinics and hospitals—and bringing more cases before courts and human rights bodies across the globe to broaden access to affordable contraception, obstetric and prenatal care, safe abortion, and all other reproductive health services.
In the United States, we are ramping up our aggressive efforts to restore robust constitutional and legal protection for reproductive rights nationwide.
We're fighting as many assaults on reproductive choice as we can take on, seeking to reverse the erosion of Roe v. Wade's protections and build a federal case for stricter court scrutiny of hostile laws.
And we're fighting relentlessly to establish a fundamental right to affordable reproductive health care that encompasses all women around the world.
Our sweeping successes over the past 20 years have demonstrated our ability to win one legal battle after another for the future of reproductive rights.
Now—and over the months, years, and decades to come—we will press ahead in our strategy for winning the war.