Chicago students defend women’s and reproductive rights.
(Fight Back! News/staff)
Chicago IL – On November 7, more than 30 activists from Students for a Democratic Society and the Freedom Road Socialist Organization gathered for a march at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Students demanded the administration open a reproductive health clinic on campus and provide free birth control for all students. The protest is part of an ongoing campaign by Students for a Democratic Society to demand the university do more to defend women’s and reproductive rights in the face of the mounting Republican attacks.
Rallying outside of the student center, SDSers gathered a crowd as they spoke, condemning the reactionary right-wing attacks in the courts and legislatures. SDSers emphasized the need to build a fighting movement to defend women’s and reproductive rights.
SDSer Erin Boyle spoke on the particular importance of demanding a clinic on campus: “As we see our rights eroded before our eyes, we cannot remain passive even in a state that is ‘safe.’ We have to build up the infrastructure that is being torn up around the rest of the country, right here on our campus.”
After the speeches students marched across campus to offices of the UIC administration, holding signs that read “Abortion saves lives” and “Defend women’s and reproductive rights.” SDSers led the crowd through the building, chanting “Abortion is healthcare, healthcare is a right.”
After leaving the offices SDSers gave a final speech calling out the hypocrisy of the UIC chancellor making $600,000 a year and the UIC police department getting nearly $10 million, while students lack access to basic medical care. The protest ended with a call to go to the board of trustees meeting on November 17 and demand the university put student and worker needs before administration greed.