‘Wake up America’: Jackson Women’s Health owner responds to the overturning of Roe v. Wade

(Rogelio V. Solis | AP)
Published: Jun. 24, 2022 at 3:01 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Officials with the Jackson abortion clinic held a press conference to discuss the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

“Today across this country, half the population were stripped of their human rights,” Derinda Hancock said.

Hancock is with the Pink House Defenders, a group of pro-choice volunteers who escort women seeking abortions to and from the Jackson Women’s Health Organization. She says that this is just the beginning.

“Those religious terrorists that you see on our sidewalk are obviously in the legislature now, in the Senate, across the nation,” said Hancock. “The 13 states that think they are going to be safe when this is over will not be safe.”

Mississippi is one of 13 states with what’s known as a trigger law. That means with Friday’s decision from the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, abortion access is almost immediately banned across the state.

Mississippi put its version of a trigger law on the books in 2007 with a bill authored by Sen. Joey Fillingane. It’s not an automatic. It includes a certification step from the Attorney General within 10 days of the court’s decision.

“The law in Mississippi says we have 10 days to remain in business from the moment the Attorney General signs the certification,” said Diane Derzis, owner of Jackson Women’s Health. “I would bet money that that certification was waiting in the office today. So that means that we will be open for the next 10 days, and we will be seeing patients for the next 10 days.”

Derzis says she believes the American people have to go to the polls and “take back our rights.”

“We thought this was a right, but clearly it wasn’t. It’s a privilege,” said Derzis. “For those people who told me over the years that I was a fool and that there was no way this would ever be overturned, I say to you, ‘Wake up, America.’”

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