Why Everyone in the Fashion Industry Is Wearing This ‘Bans Off Our Bodies’ Pin


As the nation awaits the Supreme Court decision that might change the landscape for abortion health care in this country, today the fashion industry is taking a united stand for reproductive rights as part of Fashion Says: Bans Off Our Bodies Day of Action. On Instagram, designers, stylists, and models like Batsheva Hay, Opening Ceremony’s Humberto Leon, Gabriela Hearst, Aurora James, Christy Turlington, Karla Welch, Kate Young, and more will be posting pictures sporting Planned Parenthood’s Bans Off Our Bodies pins, along with calls to action on what the public at large can do to help, like donating to an abortion fund and helping independent clinics. 

“Planned Parenthood has been around for more than a hundred years, and we and our partners have certainly been preparing for this moment,” Caren Spruch, the national director of arts and entertainment engagement of Planned Parenthood, tells me via phone. “All our health centers around the country are open, and we have a big fight in every state to ensure that everybody can control their own bodies and futures. And I think our supporters are ready. They’re angry. They’re gonna be relentless in protecting access to abortion.”  

The fashion industry has long been a vocal supporter of Planned Parenthood, like during 2017’s Fashion Stands With Planned Parenthood campaign, which was timed around Fashion Week. The urgency of the situation this time around means that many in the industry took their own initiative in contacting Planned Parenthood on what they could do to help. “Prabal [Gurung] actually called me and [asked] what else he could do,” Spruch recalls. “And we had a long and interesting talk because it’s not just abortion that’s at stake. It’s all our rights.”  

Maria Cornejo: “As a woman and a mother I believe no one else should have control of our bodies. Having a child comes with a lifetime of joy and responsibility, and being a mother shouldn’t be enforced on anyone. Prevention and education, not bans, are the answer.”

Photo: Courtesy of Maria Cornejo

Prabal Gurung: “Our lack of engagement in the political system has put these dangerous, regressive, power-hungry fools in the position of power. It is flawed. It is repugnant. It is alarming, and the time to act is now.”  

Photo: Courtesy of Prabal Gurung

Gurung agrees: “Abortion rights are directly related to democracy as it is a part of health care, [of] people’s rights to control their bodies, and above all people’s right to choose. [There] are many regressive ideas suggested by a radical group of people who have been emboldened by the rhetoric set by the extreme conservatives. These decisions do not reflect the majority of the people in this country, [the] 60% to 70% who are not in favor of overturning Roe v. Wade.” He sees the fashion industry taking a stand on these issues as nonnegotiable. “The fashion industry that profits off of women can no longer stay quiet. Our industry has made progress and continues to have conversations around inclusivity, diversity, accountability, sustainability, and body positivity. Therefore conversations around human rights—mainly women’s rights—should not be categorized [as] political discussions. They should be normalized. They should be part of our day-to-day lives. There is no other way.”  

Batsheva Hay: “I think it is imperative to take a public stand on abortion access because our rights are on the line at this moment in a way that may be irreversible for decades or longer. This is the moment to speak and act, to protect our basic liberties, health, and freedom.”

Photo: Courtesy of Batsheva Hay

Spruch believes that artists raising their voices is an essential part of being able to enact change. “We’re not going to make any long-term policy change until we change the culture because it’s the stigma around abortion that enables these policies that relate to barriers to care, to faith and legal care.” She continues, “I firmly believe art is the way that we can challenge social norms and injustice and inspire people, and changing the culture is what all of the artists I work with are experts in.”

Aurora James: “Our nation’s history of racism, colonialism, and discriminatory treatment has led Black, Latino, Indigenous, and LGBTQ people to face immense barriers to abortion care—especially Black women. The most recent threat to overturn Roe v. Wade is beyond alarming, and Black women will be hit the hardest, as they have the highest maternal mortality rates. Abortion bans and restrictions endanger all women, and we can only gain abortion rights if we address all forms of oppression. At Brother Vellies, we believe that no one is free unless they have full control of their own body and future. We stand with women everywhere and will continue to fight for a woman’s right to choose.”

Photo: Courtesy of Aurora James

Humberto Leon: “Abortion rights are under attack, and it is critical that we allow people the choice to their own bodies. This affects humanity. It’s time to take every action to ensure reproductive freedom.”

Photo: Courtesy of Humberto Leon

Emme: “I support Planned Parenthood and the choice to have an abortion. My body, my choice!”

Photo: Courtesy of Emme

Tanya Taylor: “Reproductive rights are fundamental human rights—it’s as simple and straightforward as that. All of us should have the freedom to decide on what’s best for our health and lives. As a mother, a friend, a business owner with a majority female team, fighting to protect the right to choose is what I have to do.”

Photo: Courtesy of Tanya Taylor

Fernando Garcia wears the pin.

Photo: Courtesy of Fernando Garcia

You can take action and learn more at BansOff.org.


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