51 Abortion Restrictions & New York State

“Through the first six months of 2015, states enacted 51 new abortion restrictions; this brings the number of restrictions enacted since 2010 to 282. Although only about a dozen state legislations remained in session as of July 1, these states may well enact additional restrictions before the end of the year.” RH Reality Check

It is a fact that state governments are well on their way to criminalizing abortion, and women are already dying. Just this year, a 33-year-old woman in Indiana was sentenced to 20 years in jail under that state’s fetal homicide law for supposedly self-aborting her pregnancy.

People incorrectly think that there is no problem for women in New York State. The reality, however, is quite different.
> In 2012, NY cut $2 million from the family planning budget and has still not restored those funds.
> Since January 1, 2015, nine anti-choice bills have been proposed in Albany.
> 53% of NY counties have no abortion clinics and the number of abortion providers is decreasing every year.
> In 2011 there were 225 abortion providers which is a 9% decline from 2008 when there were 249.
> For those living in NYC, abortion services are accessible. However, for those out of the City, to get an abortion past 16 weeks is significantly more difficult. Women generally have to travel to the City or Westchester to terminate. WCLA – Choice Matters and I have personally dealt with women coming from upstate to terminate at that point. It is a three-day procedure and the people require housing, etc. – not to mention they have to miss work, school and leave their families.

> After 24 weeks, it is virtually impossible to terminate in NY. NY’s law was written before Roe v. Wade and does not provide the full constitutional protection guaranteed by Roe. If a woman’s health is at risk or something goes wrong in her pregnancy after 24 weeks, she must seek care outside of NY because NY law does not allow a doctor to perform an abortion.

There are three truths:

  1. Abortion is an essential part of reproductive health care.
  2. Women will find a way to have abortions regardless of the laws and penalties implemented to stop them.
  3. Most women, by a vast majority and regardless of religion, support the right for all women to have unfettered access to comprehensive reproductive health care, including contraception and abortion.

The vast majority of young people do not recognize – because we have not forced them to learn it – that the right to control our bodies is a civil right, just like the right to vote and to marry whomever you choose. Unless vigilantly defended, these rights can and will be lost.

WCLA – Choice Matters has established a strategy for fundamental grassroots advocacy of reaching out to all registered female voters to establish their position on reproductive rights and, if pro-choice, keeping them informed about candidates and the issues. Then we email to whom we can; and mail with a stamp to everyone. Despite the speed and ease of the internet, the reality is that paper materials mailed to a household are still far more effective than email, and, unfortunately, far more expensive.

This commitment and degree of outreach are the way a real grassroots organization works and why Choice Matters and WCLA PAC are so successful – and what sets us apart, and is the key to our phenomenal impact in elections every year. However, we can’t do it without your continued financial support.

Stand with us and the silent majority that votes with our WCLA PAC Yellow Voting Guide in hand. Your continued moral and financial support enables us to keep up the fight. Without you, we cannot exist.

 

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