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Last night the Ohio legislature rushed through a ban on abortion at six weeks of pregnancy — before most women even know they’re pregnant. The bill would, in effect, outlaw abortion in Ohio. It’s one of the most extreme abortion restrictions in the country.

Women should be trusted and respected to make their own, personal health care decisions — not politicians. But in Ohio, politicians in the state legislature are doing just that. Not only is this shameful, but it’s dangerous for women.

—Iris E. Harvey, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio


About the Bill

Ohio passed the 6-week abortion ban as an amendment to a bill that had nothing to do with abortion. The bill was immediately met with protests from reproductive rights advocates, including dozens of people protesting at Governor John Kasich’s house.

Specifically, this abortion ban:

  • Has no exceptions for rape or incest

  • Could prevent women from getting abortions as early as six weeks into a pregnancy;

  • Could take away a woman’s right to make her own medical decisions before she would have known she had a decision to make.

  • Would enforce penalties for physicians who provide abortion.

Now, the 6-week abortion ban — one of the most extreme abortion restrictions in the entire country — awaits Gov. Kasich’s signature.

Yet Another Abortion Ban in Ohio

Ohio’s anti-abortion politicians aren’t stopping with just one abortion ban. They plan to pass a 20-week abortion ban before the end of the week. The 20-week abortion ban contains no exceptions for irreversible fetal anomalies, rape, incest, or mental health concerns of the woman.

We call on Governor John Kasich to veto these unconstitutional abortion bans.

— Dawn Laguens, Executive Vice President of Planned Parenthood Action Fund

If signed into law, these abortion bans would force women to travel long distances and cross state lines to access abortion.  For many women, the expense and time these bans would force upon them makes access to safe, legal abortion impossible. Let’s be clear, these bills are a blatant attempt by the Ohio Legislature to ban abortion. I urge Governor Kasich to veto both bills

Ohio’s Recent History of Attacks on Safe, Legal Abortion

Since 2011, the State of Ohio (lead by Gov. Kasich) has launched an all-out attack on reproductive health care. It has passed a whopping 18 measures to restrict Ohio women from accessing care in the state, many under the guise of protecting women’s health and safety. But we know their true motives: to ban abortion in the state of Ohio.

Gov. Kasich has ushered in one of the most restrictive, anti-woman state governments in the country. His record decimating women’s health care in Ohio is staggering. In addition to enacting 18 measures that restrict reproductive health care access, Kasich’s administration:

  • Prohibited rape crisis counselors from telling women that they had the option to access abortion services.

  • Prohibited almost all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, mandated ultrasounds before a woman can get an abortion, and required medically unnecessary and burdensome requirements that have shut down health centers.

  • Slashed “Healthy Moms, Healthy Babies, a Planned Parenthood program that specifically helped prevent infant mortality. Healthy Moms, Healthy Babies was the largest infant mortality prevention program in the state, having served hundreds of  new or expectant mothers in the last year alone. This program was needed because Ohio has the sixth highest infant mortality rate for African Americans in the country and has been ranked the sixth worst state in the country to raise an African-American child.

  • Targeted funding for programs for domestic violence prevention, HIV testing, and breast cancer screenings — simply because they were administered through Planned Parenthood health centers.

  • Defunded health care services at Planned Parenthood, jeopardizing access to care for  thousands of Ohio patients. 80,000 Ohioans come to Planned Parenthood health centers annually for birth control, cancer screenings, STI testing, and other preventive reproductive health care and Kasich’s policies put them at risk.

These policies have a real impact on health care for women in Ohio:

  • Nearly half the abortion providers in the state have shuttered.

  • Ohio women have been forced to drive to Michigan to access abortion.

  • Ohio put out a gag order that prohibited rape crisis counselors from telling women they had the option to access abortion services.

  • The state of Ohio tried to block patients from care at Planned Parenthood health centers — despite overwhelming opposition from public health experts and Ohioans in Columbus.

Sign the Pledge: We #WontBePunished

Make no mistake: These abortion bans punish women. Politicians have no right to dictate Ohio women’s personal medical decisions. Sign on to tell extremists everywhere: We won't be punished!

Tags: 20 week ban, Ohio, 6-week ban, John Kasich

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