“The Republican-led Arizona legislature has now taken measures to cut off Planned Parenthood’s access to taxpayer money funneled through the state for non-abortion services.” Use of taxpayer money for abortion was already illegal, but apparently that wasn’t good enough – now Planned Parenthood will receive no funding. It is unclear at this time exactly how this will affect its services, but it is certain that this inhibits its ability to provide health care services at a reasonable cost. For people – especially women – in Arizona without health insurance, this is a direct hit to their ability to receive lifesaving cancer screenings, STD prevention and treatment, and affordable birth control.
Utah now requires a 72 hour waiting period before an abortion. Previously, there was a 24-hour waiting period but, as of Tuesday, it has expanded to three full days. I’ll be honest: waiting period laws make me angrier than any other abortion law. There’s no pretense of protecting fetuses here; it’s all about “protecting” fragile women from their emotionally burdened lady brains. As if women need the government to remind them to think about their decision, to take it seriously! It’s insulting. The real kicker here is that there’s no loophole for non-viable fetuses, so women are forced to carry a pregnancy that could not and will not result in a live birth for three extra days which, frankly, is just plain cruel.
Wisconsin’s Planned Parenthood suspends non-surgical abortions. There is a new law in effect that “requires women visit a doctor at least three times before having a drug-induced abortion, forces physicians to determine whether a woman is being coerced into having an abortion, and prohibits women and doctors from using web cams during the procedure.” Three times? How unnecessary. In case you’re wondering about the web cam thing, they are referring to the possibility of a doctor counseling the woman about her medication via webcam – a good option when there is are a limited number of abortion providers in your state. Aside from the obvious problems here, like interfering with the relationship between the patient and her doctor and limiting a woman’s access to abortion, this poses an issue for women unique to this law – insisting that women have a surgical rather than a medical abortion. There are pros and cons to both methods (look for an upcoming post about abortion options!), but some women prefer the medical because it is more private and less physically invasive. Losing this option may make their abortion experience even more difficult for Wisconsin women.
If you live in Arizona, Utah or Wisconsin, consider contacting your representatives to let them know you’re unhappy with their shenanigans. If you want to do something about anti-choice activities in your area, contact your local representatives or sign up at Planned Parenthood Action Network to keep up to date. (Please note that our “action” site is provided by our C4, or political advocacy, arm.)