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Aurora takes part in national march for women's reproductive rights

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Yvonne Boose
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Marchers lining the sidewalk of Indian Trail Ave. in Aurora, Illinois.

Marches calling attention to reproductive rights took place across the country over the weekend.

Over 150 women, men and children braved the rain at Simmons Park in Aurora to speak out against a recent Texas law that essentially bans most abortions in the state Saturday.

Lauren Higgins, 22, said the Texas legislation breaks her heart.

“And I think that it's just horrible that people are going to have to travel to other states to get abortions,” she said, “So, I also just worry that the same things could happen in Illinois.”

Higgins said she is concerned that further restrictions will impact marginalized individuals who have limited resources to reproductive options.

Brendan Casey came to support his wife and friends. He held a sign that touched on immigration, Black lives and women’s rights.

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Yvonne Boose
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Brendan Casey, Morgan Casey, Emily Gilbert and Jennifer Cismesia on their way to Simmons Park.

“There's a lot of COVID denial and racism in our police force. And I think that a step forward for one is a step forward for everybody,” Casey explained.

The crowd gathered at the park listening to poets. Democratic Representative Barbara Hernandez also addressed the crowd. She touched on the upcoming Parental Notice of Abortion Act vote.

“There's a few other democrats that are women that are not voting for this bill. We need to convince them,” Hernandez explained. “The parents' notification is important because it is blocking a lot of young women who want to have an abortion in Illinois and cannot.”

Pooja Ravi is the organizer of the Aurora women’s march. She said the Texas legislation could be the start of something bigger across the country.

“Particularly now with the Supreme Court hearing a case that could possibly overturn Roe v. Wade," Ravi said, "I think this is dangerous for all women across the nation, including Illinois, and we need to make our voice heard and make sure that doesn't happen.”

After the gathering, marchers hit the wet sidewalk with umbrellas and reproductive rights signs.

  • Yvonne Boose is a current corps member for Report for America, an initiative of the GroundTruth Project. It's a national service program that places talented journalists in local newsrooms like WNIJ. You can learn more about Report for America at wnij.org.
Yvonne covers artistic, cultural, and spiritual expressions in the COVID-19 era. This could include how members of community cultural groups are finding creative and innovative ways to enrich their personal lives through these expressions individually and within the context of their larger communities. Boose is a recent graduate of the Illinois Media School and returns to journalism after a career in the corporate world.