January 2024 updates:


I urge the American Thoracic Society to choose its conference locations responsibly in a post-Roe world.

Acting upon its commitment to equity and inclusion, and considering the limitations on reproductive rights in a growing number of states, I demand that our society will hold future meetings only in locations that all members can attend safely regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or any other aspect of their identity.


Jump to:
  -  Why support #ATSSafe4All?
  -  What does ATS leadership say?
  -  What can I do?
  -  Presenters: Proposed inclusion statements
  -  ATS 2023: Green ribbon campaign
  -  ATS 2023: Social media campaign



Why support #ATSSafe4All?

Recent commentary from ATS members:

Medical societies must choose professional meeting locations responsibly in a post-Roe world [PDF]
Lee AG, Maley J, Hibbert K, Akgün KM, Hauschildt KE, Law A, Kaminski N, Hayes M, Gesthalter Y, Bosslet GT, Santhosh L, Witkin A, Hills-Dunlap K, Çoruh B, Gershengorn HB, Hardin CC. Annals of the American Thoracic Society. 2023; in press.

"Holding professional meetings in locations where pregnant persons cannot access standard-of-care reproductive care violates the professional societies' commitment to inclusion and equity.

"Boycotting states with restrictive health care access advocates for change and aligns us with communities made more vulnerable by restrictive legislation.

"Financial considerations are not sufficient justification to continue to hold professional meetings in these locations.

"Advocacy for equitable access to evidence based medical care for pregnant persons is our professional responsibility."

Recent commentary in JAMA Internal Medicine:

Holding medical professional society scientific meetings only in states that protect abortion rights—clinical and ethical considerations
Gross CP, Kraschel KL, Emanuel EJ. JAMA Internal Medicine. 2023;183(4):283-284.

"Members look to the leadership of medical societies to not only set technical and ethical standards, but also to iteratively define and promote professional values for their fields. Is it a slippery slope for societies to take a meaningful stand in support of abortion access? On the contrary: it is the reluctance of professional societies to take a stand that would be a slippery slope—toward condoning unjust restrictions on access to abortion care."

General information:

ACOG/AMA joint statement on legislative interference in abortion care, joined by over 75 other professional societies including ATS, AAFP, ACP, AAP, SGIM, and others

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What does ATS leadership say?

In an official statement released via Twitter on May 2, 2023, the ATS Executive Committee wrote:

"Of course, we all care about these issues deeply. However, these arguments and concerns deserve not only attention but also context, as they often fail to acknowledge the many thoughtful conversations that have previously occurred surrounding the contradicting wishes of a diverse membership with the overall health of an organization; the distance these well-intended communications create between peers who agree on the root of this problem; and the feelings of abandonment of those living in states affected by jurisdictions that affect their rights."
The full statement is shown in the Tweet below.

Other concerns raised by ATS leadership in their official statements include:

See compilation of official ATS statements (PDF).

* Between 2000 and 2022, ATS was hosted in 10 different states and provinces. Ten conferences were hosted in California; two each, in Colorado and Ontario; and one each in the remaining seven states and provinces. See past conference sites and attendance.

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What can I do?

1. Review ATS' official May 2, 2023 statement on Twitter, and reply with your thoughts.

See below for a message from the ATS Executive Committee regarding conference site locations: pic.twitter.com/ViBmknIVaw

— American Thoracic (@atscommunity) May 2, 2023

2. ATS PRESENTERS: Consider incorporating an "Inclusion Statement" in your ATS 2023 poster design or presentation slides (e.g. after COI slide). You may consider using or editing one of the following examples to show your support:
3. ATS 2023 GREEN RIBBON CAMPAIGN: Show your support by wearing a green ribbon when you attend ATS 2023 in Washington, D.C.!

When you see someone at ATS carrying a bunch of green ribbons, ask them for one!

Alternatively, DM an organizer on Twitter or reach out to any author of the Annals viewpoint to track one down.

Save the QR code for this page to spread the word about this effort.

Social media tags and links:

Twitter hashtag: #ATSSafe4All
(also tag #ATS2023)

This web site: ATSSafe4All.org

Social media profile picture (.png)

4. Use your voice to advocate within your professional societies. Consider how your society memberships and conference participation align with your values. Consider how to best use your voice, your feet, and your wallet to effect change.

11 tweets about what to do about national/international conferences in locations that have draconian #AbortionBans. Inspired by discussions re the open letter to @accpchest about #CHEST2022 but relevant to all other societies, conferences & disciplines https://t.co/IXYH8puW2H pic.twitter.com/Bw8FoV981z

— Naftali Kaminski (@KaminskiMed) October 12, 2022

5. Encourage the leadership of SCCM (@SCCM), CHEST (@accpchest), and others to align their own conference planning with women's rights.

Several critical care meetings are planned for states with abortion bans:@SCCM Phoenix (2024), Orlando (2025)@accpchest Phoenix (2026)@ELSOOrg Gainesville (2023), Phoenix (2024)@atscommunity considering Orlando (2026) & New Orleans (2027)

RT if we should move those meetings! https://t.co/FeyD5AHZcY

— Nick Mark MD (@nickmmark) February 25, 2023

6. Even if you are not personally affected by these policies, please continue to speak up for your patients and your colleagues who are affected by these policies.

Our rights, and our lives, depend on it.

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The opinions on this web page are the author's, and do not represent the positions of the University of Washington or UW Medicine.