One of PLI’s recent achievements was convincing 52 lawmakers across 27 different states to pledge to introduce proactive abortion rights legislation. Totten hopes lawmakers will meet with advocates and organizers earlier in the process of drafting legislation to streamline the system and figure out how to effectively promote and enact bills.
For those looking to get involved in reproductive rights issues close to home, Totten says people should look for nearby chapters or affiliates of organizations like Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and interfaith alliances, many of whom also work with legislators.
Even with these encouraging developments, Totten knows not every proabortion bill will get passed—in many cases, they won’t even be debated, let alone get a vote. But that doesn’t mean it’s time to throw in the towel. “In most places we will not pass anything, so we have to be even more strategic about when we’re using policy,” she says. The fight might seem overwhelming at times, but Totten knows from experience that even the smallest actions—like getting groups to sign resolutions or volunteering with proabortion organizations—really do add up.