Eboard Statement on Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson

The United Campus Workers of Georgia (UCWGA) Local 3265 considers the right of all workers to control health decisions about their bodies that do not affect other members of society to be sacrosanct and not the domain of elected or other government officials. The Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson (2022) limits the ability of people to make decisions about their participation in the workplace as workers, managers, and business owners. More importantly, it also limits the rights of people who give birth to fully participate in society, and thus makes them second class citizens. Further, the passage of House Bill 481 (the Heartbeat bill), which makes abortions in Georgia illegal after six weeks of pregnancy (i.e. two weeks after a missed period), will severely limit employment options for faculty, staff, and graduate assistant employees of the University System of Georgia.

Simultaneously, as Dobbs and HB 481 seek to force women to have children, the State of Georgia fails to provide adequate funding for programs supporting health during and after childbirth, access to child care, and the holistic wellness of children. State agencies such as the USG should be taking the lead in providing for the critical needs of all employees who may become parents. The current USG policy granting a mere three weeks of parental leave is entirely inadequate, and harmful to the emotional and physical health of families and children– especially for those employees whose jobs require sustained absence from the home, and whose meager pay severely hampers their ability to obtain quality childcare.

Therefore, UCWGA Local 3265 opposes any efforts by the federal government and the State of Georgia to interfere with the autonomy of people to make decisions about their bodies and families, and limits their ability to experience the full freedom and equality as citizens of the United States and the State of Georgia that should be afforded under the U.S. Constitution. Consequently, the position of the UCWGA is to actively resist these efforts through education, communication, mobilization, and political participation.