With the Supreme Court apparently set to overturn Roe v. Wade, patrons may turn to libraries for help seeking information about reproductive health options in private. The ethics of our profession mandate that we do so. We can help patrons by teaching them how to protect their digital privacy on their own devices and ensuring our public computers employ the strongest, most up-to-date protections.
Riley points out the laws in many states requiring people seeking abortion to get “counseling” prior to the procedure is a direct violation of the patient’s and doctor’s intellectual freedom. These laws, often referred to as “informed consent,” focus disproportionately on the negative and rare side effects of abortion while ignoring the positive effects of the procedure and the negative effects of continuing the pregnancy.
Abortion rights is a topic that some teachers may choose to avoid or be prohibited from teaching. Karen Blumenthal’s latest book, “Jane Against the World,” provides students with a well-researched and nuanced history of reproductive rights in America, connecting to larger issues of poverty, racism, and gender and workplace discrimination. Learn more about the censorship she experienced while researching Texas state documents as well as experiences with censorship related to her books.