Steph Herold is the Deputy Director of the Sea Change Program, a new non-profit organization dedicated to transforming the culture of stigma around abortion and other stigmatized reproductive experiences. Steph is an award-winning activist and researcher with a background in abortion care, abortion funds, and reproductive health advocacy. She is a recognized expert on abortion access, appearing in various media outlets including the Melissa Harris-Perry Show. Campus Progress named Steph one of the top 15 young feminists and Time magazine profiled her abortion rights activism in January 2013. She served on the Board of Directors of the New York Abortion Access Fund for three years, and is beginning a two-year term serving on the ACCESS: Women’s Health Justice Board of Directors.
Culture change is distinct from policy change and health-care access, but it’s just as important. It’s difficult to imagine long-term policy gains without doing the hard work to change norms, beliefs, and behavior.
Knowing what patients value and need from a clinic at the time of their abortion can help us make sure that abortion care is not only safe, but also patient-centered and provided in a compassionate manner.
How can we use all the data we have to create programs that actually make a dent in abortion stigma?
Requiring Medicaid coverage of abortion is a far cry from guaranteeing that people can access an abortion when they need one.
Instead of only emphasizing that couples should use contraception consistently and correctly, we have to figure out how to help them clarify their feelings about pregnancy, even if those feelings are messy and complicated.
It may be true that the pro-choice movement is “more fragmented than it’s ever been,” but this is not because young people are clamoring to overthrow those who are running legacy organizations.
Many highly trained physicians provide abortion care, so why do abortion providers continue to be stereotyped as substandard doctors?
How do the intersections between adoption, poverty, race, and class play out today?
We should understand women who have had multiple abortions through their individual life experiences rather than judging them based on their pregnancy history.
We know what we think about the Hyde Amendment. But what do women who are on Medicaid, the very people who are most affected by Hyde, think about the restrictions it places on their insurance coverage?