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Hundreds gather at Balboa Park for pro-choice rally

Posted at 6:30 PM, May 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-08 21:30:14-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Sunday, hundreds gathered at Balboa Park for a pro-choice rally highlighting the impact abortion restrictions could have on women of color.

"Black and Brown BIPOC marginalized communities will be disproportionately affected by this," said Athena Bazalaki to the large crowd.

Bazalaki is the founder of Breakfast Block, a community mutual aid organization.

She held the rally to uplift women's voices in the fight over abortion rights.

"Abortion bans do not end abortions. They end safe abortions," said Life California, who helped organize the rally.

2019 CDC data shows Black women had the highest rate of abortions, followed by Hispanic women.

People of color are also more likely to lack access to healthcare, including the resources to undergo an abortion.

California said the call for change goes beyond Roe v. Wade.

"For Black, Indigenous, and Brown women, those little ripples don't really affect them. It needs to be waves. It needs to be a tsunami of change," said California.

From speeches to spoken word, women expressed their feelings on reproductive rights.

The crowd then marched with signs held high to the Comic-Con Museum.

"I have a daughter, and I think about all the different people and what their lives are like," said Khristine Hatch.

Sitoe Thiam also attended the protest. She said she wasn't surprised by the court's decision.

"I kind of expected it, but even then, feeling the emotions of it being imminent is different," said Thiam.

Organizers said they're not just fighting for abortion rights but the need for greater access to reproductive healthcare, including sex education, contraceptives, and gender-affirming hormones.