Free and Voluntary Abortion Is Every Woman’s Right


Free and Voluntary Abortion Is Every Woman’s Right


Women's Liberation


This Chicago Women’s Liberation Union leaflet discusses the accessibility to abortion resources for women with unwanted pregnancy. Citing the physical and legal ramifications stemming from the contemporary abortion laws in the U.S., this leaflet touches upon the themes of sterilization, birth control, and global population increase in the late-1960s and 1970s.

According to the Encyclopedia of Chicago, the Chicago Women’s Liberation Union was formed in 1969. The founding members were Naomi Weisstein, Vivian Rothstein, Heather Booth, and Ruth Surgal. The group's goals under women’s liberation were to halt sexism and unequal opportunity for all women. Under the branch of unequal opportunity was women’s access to healthcare. The CWLU is best known for the pamphlet that was published in 1972 called “Socialist Feminism: A Strategy for the Women’s Movement.” The pamphlet made a national mark and put the CWLU on the map as an agent of change for women’s rights. Many chapters of Women’s Liberation were linked through the work they published, allowing women’s rights to gain influence across the country. One of the Chicago chapter's goals as an organization was to raise consciousness of women’s issues. This leaflet raises consciousness about abortion resources and their accessibility for women with unwanted pregnancies. It was also used as a measure to reject the current U.S. abortion laws and gain support to repeal them. Building on the notion of population increase, the pamphlet illustrates the stance that the CWLU had on the legalization of Abortion and the opposition to the American Medical Association. At the end of the leaflet there is a number provided for the Jane Collective. This was an underground abortion counseling service located in Chicago that ran from 1969 to 1973 and collectively performed approximately 11,000 abortions.


Chicago Women’s Liberation Union


Roz Payne


Center for Digital Research in the Humanities, University of Nebraska-Lincoln


ca. late-1960s or early-1970s





Original Format



Chicago Women’s Liberation Union, “Free and Voluntary Abortion Is Every Woman’s Right,” Roz Payne Sixties Archive, accessed June 20, 2024,

Output Formats