Abortion “Desert”: Where would Western women go in the event of a Roe v. Wade incident?

Organizations that provide or advocate women’s sexual and reproductive health care have years of potential overturning the Roe v. Wade case, a groundbreaking Supreme Court decision that has established constitutional rights to abortion. I have planned.

later Leakage of draft majority opinion indicating that the Supreme Court has voted privately To defeat the Roe v. Wade case, abortion providers, advocacy groups, and some state legislatures and governors to assist women in other states with trigger legislation that bans or severely restricts access to abortion. work.

However, even with these supports, women seeking care in states with no or few abortion restrictions already have longer wait times as more women from other states travel to seek care. I have an abortion.

For example, Planned Parenthood’s Colorado Clinic saw 44 patients from Texas between September 2020 and March 2021. During the same period one year later, and Texas Heartbeat ActReported that they saw 506 Texas patients FiveThirtyEight.comSpecializes in poll analysis, politics, economics, and sports blogging.

Even before the Supreme Court’s draft opinion leaked, women “have had to have the means to work within the system to achieve an abortion,” said Utah Planning and Custody Association CEO and Chairman. Karrie Galloway says.

Under current law, Utah patients must receive state-led counseling, including information designed to discourage abortion, and then wait 72 hours before the procedure is provided. Guttmacher InstituteSelf-proclaimed “a leading research and policy organization working to promote sexual and reproductive health and rights around the world.”

There are also restrictions on health insurance, insurance coverage, and public funding for abortion. In Utah, minor parents must agree and be notified before an abortion is offered.

In Utah, overturning the Roe v. Wade case SB174, Passed by the Utah State Capitol in 2020. A law sponsored by Senator Dan Mackay of R-Riverton prohibits selective abortion, but allows procedures for rape, incest, mother’s life-threatening risks, and certain fetal defects. increase.

Travel for abortion

If Roe capsizes, women seeking selective abortion will have to go out of state for care, but will be heavily dependent on personal resources and circumstances.

Some women may not be able to take care of their family, work, or other responsibilities elsewhere, even with financial support for travel, accommodation, and meals. People with disabilities and those who are not admitted to the United States face additional challenges.

“What we’ve learned in Texas is that so many people have never left a newborn county, so the idea of ​​leaving the state for basic health care is completely impossible. It’s just that it’s not in the realm of thought, where the reality of being able to help people comes into play, so it’s a very spectacular situation, “says Galloway.

McKay replied when asked if the prospect of a woman having to seek abortion services in other states would give him a pause. .. “

Pregnant women have far more government social and medical services available to them and their children in 2022 than in the days of Law and Casey in 1992, according to McKay. That is.

“We hope that changes seen domestically and locally, such as Medicaid, Medicaid Expansion, and CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program), will add all programs that did not exist when Roe and Casey existed. I think there is more support for women with unexpected pregnancies than the community programs and community support we see everywhere, “he said.

Regarding the patchwork of the abortion law that would occur if the Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade case, he said: I don’t think the legal patchwork on this issue is to be able to more accurately reflect local sentiment towards policy. I don’t think it’s a bad thing, “says McKay.

“Island” in “Abortion Desert”

Even with enhanced service safety nets, some women seek selective abortion. The closest abortion clinic along I-70, the main road for women in Utah, is in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, about 369 miles from Salt Lake City.

In recent years, a relatively small number of women in Utah have sought care from an abortion clinic in Colorado. In 2021, 56 women in Utah underwent an abortion in Colorado. Colorado Public Health and Environment Department.. This was a slight increase from 49 in the previous year, but the number of Utahns seeking abortion in neighboring Colorado was significantly lower than in the less populated Wyoming and New Mexico states.

However, if that change occurs, Utah women will have more women living outside Colorado and may come to the state for sexual and reproductive health care.

Of the 11,580 abortions in Colorado in 2021, it was the highest in 12 years, but 13.5% were out-of-state women. The number of non-resident cases increased from 1,283 in 2020 to 1,560 in 2021.

If Roe is overturned, the result is a patchwork of law.Capsize Roe v. Wade Although it does not outlaw abortion, the state can individually determine the legality of the procedure.

In the Rocky Mountains, Utah, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Idaho all have trigger laws, but Colorado does not limit when an abortion occurs and after the necessary abortion counseling. It’s one of the few states that doesn’t even require a waiting period.

If Roe overthrows, Colorado will become an “island in the middle of the abortion desert,” said Christina Totche, vice president and medical director of planned parent-child relationships in the Rocky Mountains. Denver Gazette.

West West Wendover, Nevada The border of Utanevada in Wendover was drawn on September 21, 2012.

Christine Murphy, Dezalet News

Planned parent-child relationships in the Rocky Mountains, including Colorado, New Mexico, and southern Nevada, have been working to build that capacity for three years, and leaked drafts will accelerate in the coming weeks and months. Gazette reported that it would accelerate the action.

Galloway emphasized that the leaked Supreme Court opinion was a draft and that abortion is still legal in the United States.

“The planned parent-child relationship never goes away. Our basic premise is to help people plan their families and enable the strongest families, whether they achieve or postpone their pregnancy. That is, we never give up on that mission. ”

She added: We work with the people who contact us to ensure they receive the services they need. “

McKay said the leak of the draft majority led to rumors, gossip and speculation.

“I really don’t know if Roe will overthrow yet,” he said.

“As a result, I’m not working on anything right now, and I won’t see anyone else until I get the final opinion from the Supreme Court and know which direction state law is allowed to go. McKay said.

One possibility is that the court may rule the constitutionality of the Mississippi law and “leave the rest of the bill as it is,” he said. The Mississippi Gestational Age Act of 2018 prohibits abortion after 15 weeks of gestation, except in medical emergencies or severe fetal abnormalities.

The leaked draft opinion “may actually make it less likely to be the final opinion, but it’s a complete speculation,” McKay said.

Correspondence of other states

While some states are preparing to enact a trigger law if the Supreme Court overturns the Roe v. Wade case, other state leaders are codifying the protection of state law or amending the state constitution. I am proposing.

Three New England Governor have recently vowed to protect the state’s right to abortion. New York Times..

“It will be a major setback for women in the state who do not have a responsible law to protect access to abortion and assisted reproductive technology,” said Charlie Baker, Governor of Massachusetts.

California voters are expected to vote for an amendment to the State Constitution enshrining the right to abortion in November. New York Times..

Some states are considering using state funds to help both residents and non-residents receive abortion treatment, regardless of the Supreme Court’s final decision. Oregon Parliamentarians set up a $ 15 million Reproductive Health Equity Fund this spring to subsidize local organizations to help pay for procedures, and California is considering a similar law. Politico reported.

Meanwhile, Republican Governor of Utah Spencercox and Lieutenant Daedle Henderson said in a statement: Is not an actual decision, and the leaked draft is a dangerous breach of the court’s protocol and deliberations. Utah has already passed the law, SB174, It governs if the High Court decides to overthrow Roe. In this case, we are looking forward to the actual court decision. “

Focus on family planning

Galloway, who has been working at Planned Parenthood in Utah since 1981 and has been a board member since 1987, said the association plans to “double” its family planning efforts.

After three years, without the funding of Federal Title X to support clinics that provide family planning services to low-income earners, the Utah Planning and Parents Association has returned to a federal grant program.

Utah’s planned parent-child relationship The program has ended Due to the “gag rules” enforced during the Trump administration in 2019, which banned recipients from referrals to patients for abortion, except in the case of rape, incest, or emergency medical care.

“We have just regained the money for Title X to become a Utah steward,” Galloway said. “Here in Utah, almost three years have passed without federal funding to subsidize contraception, but they never left.”

Galloway said Utah’s planned parent-child relationship “will continue to be open at all health centers throughout the state to provide family planning services.”

“We will continue to grow and be proud,” she said. “So we never leave. No, we are here. We are here to help people. People can count on us.”

https://www./utah/2022/5/9/23055984/can-women-seeking-abortion-services-navigate-patchwork-state-laws-roe-overturned Abortion “Desert”: Where would Western women go in the event of a Roe v. Wade incident?

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