Women Of Color, Voting, Politicians, maternal death rates, criminal justice system

Women Of Color Hold Great Voting Power; Will Politicians Listen?

For Black women, addressing high maternal death rates, discrimination, and reforming the criminal justice system were top priorities.

New polling data released by Intersections of Our Lives highlights the influential voting power of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI), Black, and Latina/x women while revealing its sentiment that policymakers and politicians are not prioritizing issues that directly impact their daily lives.

According to a press release, the poll found that reproductive justice issues concerning well-paying jobs, affordable healthcare, maternal health, cost of living, and rising prices are top priorities for these voters who could sway elections. Nearly nine in 10 women of color consider voting extremely or very important, and half of women of color view voting as an extremely effective tool for enacting desired change, underscoring that their experiences and priorities are largely absent from political and policy conversations.

Women’s rights, abortion, and rising costs top the list of issues that will influence their votes in the upcoming 2024 elections for President, Senate, Congress, and other offices. Regarding abortion, 79% of Black, 76% of AAPI, and 75% of Latina/x women agree that merely legalizing abortion is insufficient without ensuring access to abortion care. Rising costs affecting healthcare, housing, and the pay gap are among the most important vote-determining issues for 35% of Latina/x, 33% of AAPI, and 29% of Black women.

Women of color perceive a deterioration in the country over the past year and believe that, given the long history of racism, it is time for a leader who will establish long-overdue systems of racial justice.

Intersections of Our Lives is a collaborative effort by three reproductive justice organizations led by women of color from: the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice (Latina Institute); National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF); and In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda. “…Women of color voters are too powerful a force to be ignored during this year’s election season,” stated NAPAWF Executive Director Sung Yeon Choimorrow. “If our communities do not see the change we expect and deserve, we are prepared to fight for that change at the ballot box.”

“This poll makes it clear that women of color voters expect their elected officials to speak to Reproductive Justice issues that matter to them,” said Latina Institute Executive Director Lupe M. Rodríguez. “By joining forces, we can focus the power of this influential voting bloc to affect change.”

For Black women, addressing high maternal death rates, discrimination, and reforming the criminal justice system were other top priorities that each community wants Congress to act on. “Make no mistake, Reproductive Justice is a key issue…and it will determine who we support this election season,” said In Our Own Voice President and CEO Regina Davis Moss. “Our vote is key to securing equity and justice for our families and generations to come.”

The survey findings are from a national mixed-mode survey of 850 AAPI, 850 Black, and 850 Latina/x women registered voters, with ethnic and regional oversamples.

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