Anyone who has considered a move (or spent more than a millisecond online) can tell you that there are no shortage of lists ranking America's cities on, well, pretty much every attribute under the sun. Reports exist for dating prospects, affordable digs, and even dog friendliness, after all.
But what locale is best for your uterus and reproductive health as a whole?
A just-released ranking from the National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) is here to answer that important question. The report, published Wednesday, evaluated the 40 U.S. most populous cities on policies related to reproductive health and rights.
The initiative, called the Local Reproductive Freedom Index, used 37 unique policy indicators to calculate whether these cities are advancing reproductive freedom on several categories — including support for young people's reproductive healthcare and families' finances and healthcare, access to abortion clinics, and coverage and funding for healthcare such as family planning or prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
The study found that San Francisco was the city best equipped to protect its residents' reproductive rights. Other cities that ranked high include New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Philadelphia. In the report, the NIRH highlighted that these cities are larger than in other parts of the country, which means they have more financial resources, and are also part of progressive states, which have historically championed social justice causes. And even though they ranked lower in the list, the report says smaller and less-financially advantage places like Baltimore, Detroit, and Columbus, OH have also made great advancements towards protecting reproductive freedom.
Some of the cities that ranked at the bottom of the list include Atlanta, GA; Charlotte, NC; Hartford, CT; Las Vegas, NV; Nashville, TN; and Jacksonville, FL. All those places were found to lack sufficient policies championing reproductive health and rights.
The idea behind the Local Reproductive Freedom Index is to encourage cities to establish more measures protecting access to abortion clinics, providing funding for reproductive healthcare, and offering comprehensive sexuality education in public schools, among other reproductive freedom policies.
"As the federal government works to strip women of control over their reproductive and sexual lives, and many states move to pass even more draconian anti-abortion restrictions than in previous years, local action is becoming increasingly important," Andrea Miller, president of NIRH and the NIRH Action Fund, said in a statement. "If the White House and State Houses won't stand up for women, then City Hall has the opportunity to lead."