Community Catalyst Deplores Draconian Abortion Laws Designed to Overturn Roe V. Wade

(BOSTON) Statement from Diane Felicio, interim executive director, and Lois Uttley, director of the Women’s Health Program at Community Catalyst in response to legislation signed into law yesterday by Alabama Governor Kay Ivey that makes abortion illegal in Alabama, and to other state legislative efforts aimed at ending women’s right to a safe, legal abortion.

“States governed by leaders intent on dismantling women’s rights have rushed this year to enact draconian laws that effectively ban abortion. The latest state to do so is Alabama, where the governor last night signed into law a bill that bans abortion at every stage of pregnancy, with an exception only to save the life of the patient. There are no exceptions for rape or incest, and doctors who perform abortions could be sent to prison for up to 99 years. A highly restrictive abortion law was just enacted in Georgia, banning abortion after six weeks of pregnancy (before a woman would even realize she is pregnant). Louisiana and Missouri legislators are moving forward with similar bills.

“We deplore the harmful, politically-motivated attacks on abortion care that will cause countless families across our country to suffer.

“Make no mistake. The real goal of these terrifying new laws seeking to outlaw abortion is to provoke a court challenge that will give the Supreme Court the opportunity to overturn Roe v. Wade. There is reason to be worried, given the anti-choice views of the high court’s two newest judges, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, both appointed by Donald Trump.

“Some progressive states, such as New York, have seen the threat posed by the Supreme Court’s anti-choice majority, and have enacted laws enshrining Roe v. Wade-like principles at the state level. While these statutes will ensure safe havens for abortion care in those states, pregnant people in states governed by leaders who are hostile to women’s reproductive rights across the country could soon be left with no convenient, affordable, timely options for legal abortions services. The greatest impact will be on low-income women of color, many of them living in Southern states.

“Abortion is an essential part of comprehensive reproductive health services. Decisions about abortion must be made by individuals and families, not by politicians. As an organization working to ensure all people get the health care they need when they need it, we strongly condemn these laws and join the majority of people across the country who support people’s access to safe, legal abortion and reproductive health care.”

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About Community Catalyst

Community Catalyst is a national, non-profit consumer advocacy organization founded in 1998 with the belief that affordable, quality health care should be accessible to everyone. We work in partnership with national, state and local organizations, policymakers, and philanthropic foundations to ensure consumer interests are represented wherever important decisions about health and the health system are made: in communities, courtrooms, statehouses and on Capitol Hill. For more information, visit www.communitycatalyst.org. Follow us on Twitter @healthpolicyhub.

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