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The Mission of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice
The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice brings the moral power of religious communities to ensure reproductive choice through education and advocacy. The Coalition seeks to give clear voice to the reproductive issues of people of color, those living in poverty, and other underserved populations.
RCRC was founded in 1973 to safeguard the newly won constitutional right to abortion. The Coalition founders were clergy and lay leaders from mainstream religions, many of whom had provided women with referrals to safe abortion services before the Supreme Court legalized abortion in Roe v. Wade. The founders believed that there would be at most a ten-year struggle to secure the right to choose. In fact the struggle is far from over. It has changed and intensified, and the stakes are growing.
Today, the Religious Coalition comprises national organizations from major faiths and traditions, religiously affiliated and independent religious organizations, affiliates throughout the country, the national Clergy for Choice Network, Spiritual Youth for Reproductive Freedom chapters, The Black Church Initiative, and individuals who support reproductive choice and religious freedom..
While our member organizations are religiously and theologically diverse, they are unified in the commitment to preserve reproductive choice as a basic part of religious liberty.
Our rational, healing perspective looks beyond the bitter abortion debate to seek solutions to pressing problems such as unintended pregnancy, the spread of HIV/AIDS, inadequate health care and health insurance, and the severe reduction in reproductive health care services. We support access to sex education, family planning and contraception, affordable child care and health care, and adoption services as well as safe, legal, abortion services, regardless of income. We work for public policies that ensure the medical, economic, and educational resources necessary for healthy families and communities that are equipped to nurture children in peace and love.
The Religious Coalition is an interfaith, interdenominational organization dedicated to reproductive justice. RCRC's mission encompasses all aspects of reproductive justice, including affordable healthcare, access to reproductive and general healthcare, healthy families and communities, affordable childcare, and support for single mothers, lower-income families, minorities, and other underserved populations. RCRC has affiliates across the United States and partners with other organizations, including the Unitarian Universalist Association, the Rabbinical Assembly, the Episcopal Church, the Society for Humanistic Judaism, the Union for Reform Judaism, Catholics For A Free Choice, and the Justice and Witness Ministries, among others. RCRC also includes the Black Church Initiative (BCI), Spiritual Youth for Reproductive Freedom (SYRF), and the Generation to Generation program. BCI works with African-American churches and communities to address social and health issues, hosts the annual BCI Summit on Sexuality, and has developed the "Keeping it Real" program for African-American youth that encourages healthy life choices through education and empowerment. SYRF works with spiritual youth nationwide to develop local campus, church, and community SYRF chapters that are dedicated to raising awareness about religious support for reproductive choice. The Generation to Generation program is an educational program for teenage girls in Ward 8 of Washington, D.C., and their mothers, grandmothers, or female guardians. Through dialogue, education, and group activities, the G2G program helps teenage girls make healthy and informed choices in order to secure their future success and strengthens family and community support.
- Tinselyn Simms-Hall
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