Twin Cities students demand abortion access on all UMN campuses
Minneapolis, MN – 15 University of Minnesota students and staff members gathered in the rain outside of UMN’s Morrill Hall on February 14 for a Valentine’s Day-themed rally hosted by Students for a Democratic Society and AFSCME demanding the expansion of abortion access across all University of Minnesota campuses.
Protesters adorned the exterior of the building that contains the university President Joan Gabel’s office with heart-shaped signs stating “UMN owes abortion access” and “Abortion is healthcare.” Valentines were given to passers-by that had pieces of candy attached to fact sheets detailing how there was once an abortion clinic on the UMN Twin Cities campus which was closed decades ago due to anti-choice legal pressure, and the fact that the university still conducts business with states that have banned abortion since the overturning of Roe v. Wade in June of 2022.
SDS member Gianna Diaz expressed great disappointment toward the university for its lack of response to student and community demands, reminding them that “as one of the largest healthcare providers in the state, they are obligated to provide comprehensive healthcare to all those they serve, including abortion.”
After the spirited rally, attendees attempted to enter Morrill Hall to drop off handwritten valentines containing SDS’s demands at President Gabel’s office. They found that the building, which is typically open to university students and employees during the daytime, was not only locked but also being guarded from the inside by armed University of Minnesota Police Department officers, who did not allow the students passage into the building.
Follow @umnsds on social media for future actions and updates on the campaign for expanded women’s and reproductive rights at the University of Minnesota.