The text message Cynthia Menchaca received this summer was one she was seeing more and more: A woman living in Texas said she had left a violent relationship only to discover she was pregnant, and she desperately wanted an abortion. The woman had learned that Ms. Menchaca could send her abortion pills from Mexico, where the procedure has been decriminalized in several states.
But the growing U.S. demand for abortion care is not limited to deliveries of medication, according to advocates like Ms. Menchaca, who lives in Coahuila state in northeastern Mexico.
Clinics in Tijuana and Mexico City, as well as activists in the northwestern city of Hermosillo, say they have seen women crossing the border from Texas, Louisiana and Arizona seeking access to abortion.
“Before, the women from Sonora would go to the United States to access abortions in clinics,” said Andrea Sanchez, an abortion-rights activist, referring to the Mexican state that borders Arizona. “And now the women from the United States come to Mexico.”
More than a year after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Mexican abortion-rights activists have seen a rise of American women crossing the border to seek abortions — crystallizing the shifting policies of two nations that once held vastly different positions on the procedure.
For decades, abortion was criminalized in Mexico and much of Latin America with few exceptions, while in the United States, the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling established a constitutional right to abortion.
Today, Mexico’s Supreme Court