Since the United States Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade on June 24, women and people with uteruses have faced uncertainty across the nation. Since the ruling, 44 states have banned abortion after a certain point in pregnancy, with 17 banning it entirely. For New Mexico, abortion is still legal at any stage of pregnancy.

Resource centers from the University of New Mexico such as the Women’s Resource Center and the Division for Equity and Inclusion stated their support for people affected all over the country and UNM students in particular. 

“We are not interested in debating the critical and lifesaving nature of this human right, but even if you don't support abortion, we support you. We know abortions cannot be stopped, but we deserve laws that make abortions safe, accessible and affordable. There is a lineage of women and people who have always made abortions available to one another. If you or someone you know needs an abortion, do not give up,” read a statement from the WRC Instagram page.



According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published in the New York Times, the majority of people who’ve had abortions are between their early and late 20s. Ages 25-29 represent 29% of abortion patients and ages 20-24 represent 28%.

Student Health and Counseling at UNM is also showing its support for students by combining medical services along with mental health and behavioral services, according to Dr. James Wilterding, co-medical director at SHAC.

“Of course, we're paying close attention to the impact this decision has had on the students, the patient population that we serve, and we're keenly aware this rollback in access to care is a threat to the individual,” Wilterding said.

While SHAC does not perform neither medical nor surgical abortion, they do provide other comprehensive reproductive health care services, alongside a full range of contraceptive services and counseling, according to Wilterding. SHAC can also help refer students facing pregnancies to prenatal care and help them find proper care. Wilterding acknowledged the influx of patients New Mexico faces, creating challenges for local individuals and longer wait times.

To further help students, SHAC is coordinating with the dean of students, the WRC and other resource centers on an ongoing collaboration to lower barriers to care, primarily for students but also for faculty.

The WRC supports pregnant people and people that don't want to be pregnant by conducting an advocacy center which allows individuals to navigate any type of trauma, especially gender-based trauma, and receive confidential support and resource navigation, according to Áine McCarthy, interim director at the WRC.

“The WRC has always been like an incubator for students, ideas and initiatives,” McCarthy said. “We're here to listen and to support.”

Despite receiving hatred from anti-abortion students and parents, the WRC just wants to create better access for students to obtain proper health care.

“We're not an agency taking a political stance, but we also know that in the history of feminism, personal choices are always political,” McCarthy said. “We're always going to support students personally with their journeys when they come to us.”

The WRC will be welcoming students with new staff and more programs where students can share their stories and get nonclinical counseling in the fall.

For the upcoming semester, SHAC has also added three mental health counselors thanks to extra funding from the University. Besides providing resources for students, SHAC is also advocating for an equitable health care system that works for everybody.

“We have very clear public health data, epidemiological data, that shows a restriction in access to abortion doesn't actually reduce abortions. It just causes very unsafe situations that threaten the health of those individuals who may be pregnant,” Wilterberg said.

SHAC will also offer emergency contraception at the UNM pharmacy without a prescription from a medical provider for students who qualify. Those who don’t can access an alternative through a clinic appointment.

Both the WRC and SHAC offer counsel and guidance for abortion care access to students who wish to terminate their pregnancies.

Annya Loya is a freelance reporter at the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at culture@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @annyaloya