What to know concerning the AG’s new reproductive justice unit

Well being

AG Cambell has named reproductive justice lawyer Sapna Khatri because the unit’s govt director.

Andrea Campbell, seated wearing a blue blazer, gazes thoughtfully out a window
Legal professional Normal Andrea Campbell introduced Sapna Khatri because the director of the brand new reproductive justice unit at an Oct. 2 press convention. Erin Clark/Globe Workers

Legal professional Normal Andrea Campbell introduced the creation of a brand new Reproductive Justice Unit inside her workplace on Monday, naming Sapna Khatri as its govt director.

The unit will give attention to defending entry to reproductive well being care, gender-affirming care, postpartum care, and extra in Massachusetts. 

“Each considered one of us ought to benefit from the primary proper to make selections for ourselves about our our bodies, our lives, our households, and our futures — together with whether or not, when, and find out how to have and guardian a baby — no matter the place you reside, who you’re keen on, or what your life circumstances are,” Campbell advised reporters throughout a press convention Monday. “This contains entry to abortion and gender-affirming care, which is crucial well being care.”

After the Supreme Courtroom’s determination in Dobbs v. Jackson Girls’s Well being eradicated the federal proper to an abortion in 2022, Massachusetts handed the Protect Legislation to guard the appropriate to abortion and gender-affirming care within the state. The brand new reproductive justice unit will assist implement the legislation, Campbell mentioned on the press convention.

“Proper wing, anti-science extremists won’t cease till abortion is banned in all 50 states and LGBT individuals, beginning with youth, are pushed into the shadows,” Campbell mentioned. “It’s not nearly entry to abortion. That’s one piece of the work. But it surely actually is about entry to healthcare … it’s about freedom.”

Sapna Khatri is a lawyer with a background in reproductive justice and privateness legislation. She beforehand labored on reproductive well being points as a workers lawyer for the ACLU of Illinois, and most not too long ago as a instructing fellow on the UCLA College of Legislation, the place she launched the varsity’s Reproductive Justice Externship Program.

“This unit will function an vital software to make sure Massachusetts continues to paved the way with regards to accessing the total suite of sexual and reproductive well being care,” Khatri mentioned on the press convention. “That features, however is certainly not restricted to, abortion care, maternal well being care, gender-affirming care, and preventative care.”

Khatri went on to clarify her priorities for the unit.

“We should work to deal with the dangerous practices of disaster being pregnant facilities,” which have been criticized for providing deceptive details about the companies they provide, she mentioned. “We should work to guard entry to abortion care and gender-affirming care. We should work to critically look at the expansion of expertise, and enact protections for our information privateness and safety. And we should champion insurance policies that implement important instruments, like complete intercourse schooling in colleges throughout the Commonwealth.” 

Campbell is a well known champion of reproductive well being. Certainly one of her first official acts as lawyer normal was to launch the state’s free Abortion Authorized Hotline, a partnership with the Girls’s Bar Basis, the ACLU of Massachusetts, and 5 legislation companies, in January. In August, she introduced $1.5 million in maternal well being fairness grants for 11 organizations throughout the Commonwealth.