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Protecting the Right to Contraception for Families in Mississippi

More than 9-in-10 Mississippi families use contraception to plan their families. 

Even though families throughout Mississippi rely on contraception to plan when to have children, in 2022, Mississippi’s governor, Tate Reeves, refused to rule out banning contraception in the state.

Why Mississippi Needs to Protect the Right to Contraception

black family with newborn

Governor Reeves is willing to take away the crucial right to contraception that so many Mississippi women and families rely upon. Despite this, most families in Mississippi rely on contraception, as 94% of women with children in Mississippi have at one point used contraceptives to plan their pregnancies, while 86% of women who have not given birth in the state have used contraception.


Contraception access allows families to plan when to have children, which leads to better health, more economic stability, and a greater quality of life for both children and parents. 

Promoting Family Planning and Ensuring Stability:

  • Protecting the right to contraception allows individuals and couples to strategically plan their families, aligning with their unique circumstances and aspirations. By providing the means to prevent unplanned pregnancies, contraception offers individuals the invaluable opportunity to embark on the journey of parenthood when they are emotionally, financially, and socially ready. 

  • The freedom for parents to exercise choice in planning and spacing pregnancies not only cultivates family stability, but also ensures that parents can provide their children with the necessary care, resources, and support, fostering healthier family dynamics and creating nurturing environments that promote the overall well-being of all family members.


Advancing Economic Stability:

  • Contraception plays a crucial role in fostering economic security for families by empowering couples to make deliberate choices regarding their financial well-being and future. It enables them to pursue educational opportunities, enter the workforce, and strive for career advancement, all of which are instrumental in promoting economic stability and enhancing their overall standard of living.

What’s the Current State of Contraception Access in Mississippi?

Mississippi is one of the hardest states in the country to access contraception. With insufficient healthcare centers, over 208,400 families live in contraceptive deserts and many are driving more than an hour to access an OB-GYN clinic. 


Even if someone manages to get a prescription for birth control, Mississippi is only one of six US states where it is legal for pharmacists to refuse to fill prescriptions for birth control and other contraceptives.


With contraception already being difficult to obtain, a full ban would get rid of the few options left for Mississippi families to exercise the freedom to plan when to have children and avoid unintended pregnancies.

Mississippi access to contraception drive time to ob gyn map

Could Birth Control Really Be Banned?

Birth control has been banned before (until 1972), and the Supreme Court has indicated it may be willing to ban it again—or at least send it back to the states to decide. 

Just this past year, 195 US House Republicans voted against the Right to Basic Contraception–the pill, IUDs, condoms.  And extreme politicians in 11 states currently have introduced legislation or taken executive action to take away the Right to Contraception. 

In Wisconsin, one representative argued on the legislative floor that contraception is responsible for ruining marriages, spreading STDs, and making women act unnaturally.  

It's only a matter of time until these arguments become a problem in Mississippi too. When that happens, Mississippi needs to be ready with protections already in place and our right to access birth control codified into state law. 

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