Black August Freedom Rides

With the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, many states across the south have already banned or are moving quickly to ban nearly all abortions. Without access to abortion care in those states, pregnant people will be forced to travel to other states, such as Illinois, to obtain the care they need. The same states that are dismantling and criminalizing access to abortion are also working to prohibit and criminalize gender-affirming care for trans people.

In August of 2022, reproductive and trans healthcare leaders and advocates from Tennessee, Mississippi, and Louisiana embarked on a journey to illustrate the distance pregnant and trans people have to travel to access reproductive and gender-affirming care. 

These leaders and advocates rode together on the City of New Orleans train to Chicago. In Chicago, they developed strategies to ensure safe access to abortion and gender affirming care and formed vital connections with one another and local reproductive and LGBTQ+ healthcare providers and advocates.

Itinerary and Program

Video: Black August Freedom Rides: A Journey For Repro Justice (Directed and Photographed by Annika Vanderspek. Edited by Urban Matrix Creative Solutions)

Digital Resource Booklet includes all the connections Freedom Riders made along the journey, partner by partner and state by state - from the Deep South to the Midwest - to get access to abortion services, gender affirming and trans/gnc inclusive healthcare services. 

Special Thanks to our Sponsors:
Lift Louisiana, Foundation for Louisiana, Chicago Department of Public Health, Marsha P. Johnson Institute, and NEIU: Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies