“Few decisions are more personal and intimate, more properly private, or more basic to individual dignity and autonomy, than a woman's decision . . . whether to end her pregnancy. A woman's right to make that choice freely is fundamental.”
— U.S. Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun,
Thornburgh v. American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists, 1986
Decisions about contraception, marriage, and child-rearing are among the most intimate and important decisions a woman will ever make. Since its inception in 1920, the ACLU has recognized that personal privacy and reproductive freedoms are among our most important constitutional liberties. The ACLU was the first national organization to argue for abortion rights in the U.S. Supreme Court, and has been the principal defender of those rights since 1973, when the Court recognized the right to choose in Roe v. Wade.
Every person should be able to make informed, meaningful decisions about reproduction free from intrusion by the government. Through litigation, advocacy, and public education, we aim to protect access to the full spectrum of reproductive health care, from sex education and family planning services, to prenatal care and childbearing assistance, to abortion counseling and services.