In 2011, Arizona passed the nation’s first racially discriminatory abortion ban. The law, passed by far-right politicians, exploits negative stereotypes about women of color to support an anti-choice agenda. It bans abortions based on race or gender preference, and purports to be in furtherance of women’s and civil rights. In reality, it is an underhanded tactic the far-right is using to undermine women’s health. By appropriating the language of equality, these politicians hoped to deceive social justice advocates and gain broad support for an anti-choice measure.

NAPAWF Arizona meme V 4 Draft 1But we were not deceived. Arizona’s law is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and we know it.

Since Arizona passed its law, numerous states have followed in its footsteps. Today, state and federal lawmakers from across the country are trying to subject more and more women to this insulting attack on reproductive health.

NAPAWF has been fighting against these abortion bans for years, in the states and at the federal level. When this ban was being debated in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2012, NAPAWF Executive Director Miriam Yeung was the sole witness testifying against it, and for women of color.

On May 29, 2013, the ACLU filed suit on behalf of NAPAWF and the NAACP to overturn Arizona’s racially discriminatory abortion ban. This is the first suit of its kind. We hope our legal challenge will expose this law for what it really is and help put an end to these bans, once and for all.

Below, you will find related media and resources on this issue.

For press inquiries, contact Erin White at


RH Reality Check Podcast: Arizona’s Race-Baiting Abortion Law (9:52)


Press Conference: ACLU, NAACP, NAPAWF Challenge Arizona Law (12:18)


Salon Sex-selective abortion bans: Just another right-wing ruse

WPTwitterIcon-512x512 Civil rights groups sue Arizona over law banning abortions based on race or sex selection

twitter-logo128 ACLU Takes On Arizona’s Ban on Sex- and Race-Selective Abortions

aclu-logoCivil Rights Groups Challenge Arizona Law Targeting Women of Color

NAPAWF Press Release: Asian women advocates join ACLU, NAACP to challenge AZ abortion restriction

NAPAWF Resource: Race and Sex Selection Abortion Bans