Holcomb fails to represent the people of Indiana: the overwhelming majority of voters in Indiana want access to all reproductive health care, including safe and legal abortion
Indianapolis, IN – Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates - Indiana (PPAA) condemns Governor Holcomb for signing House Bill 1217 into law, a redundant and unnecessary bill designed to stigmatize abortion and restrict access to care. Indiana continues to lead the nation in abortion restrictions, despite widespread support for the full range of reproductive health care options — including abortion. This new law will do nothing to meaningfully address reproductive coercion and is instead just another targeted restriction in a coordinated attack to end abortion rights in Indiana outright.
Abortion providers already screen for intimate partner violence and administer strong informed consent practices to ensure patients freely consent to their care. Instead of addressing reproductive coercion and violence, anti-abortion laws like HB 1217 only serve to single out and stigmatize abortion, which is why medical groups and professionals oppose these types of measures.
Statement from Lisa Humes-Schulz, Vice President of Policy & Regulatory Affairs for Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates (PPAA):
“The people of Indiana will undoubtedly suffer as politicians continue to attack essential services that keep our communities healthy,” said Lisa Humes-Schulz, Vice President of Policy & Regulatory Affairs for Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates. “HB 1217 is part of a coordinated assault to end access to abortion care and heightens the risk of intimate partner violence on pregnant people. This bill does nothing to improve reproductive coercion and is intended solely to stigmatize abortion care and shame people seeking abortions — on top of the dozens of existing abortion restrictions that already make it difficult to access abortion in Indiana.
“Restrictions on access to abortion care are not what the people of Indiana want. Governor Holcomb has sold out to an extremist political agenda at the expense of his constituents’ health. This is not what a democracy looks like. Planned Parenthood will never stop fighting for the right to basic health care for every person in Indiana, no matter what.”
Earlier this month, 100 Republican members of the Indiana General Assembly called on Gov. Holcomb to hold a special session to ban abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned or gutted. HB 1217 signals Gov. Holcomb’s willingness to ban abortion outright, which would force patients to travel across state lines and drive an estimated 126 miles each way to reach time-sensitive, essential care. Eliminating access to abortion and forcing people to carry unwanted pregnancies to term would increase maternal mortality rates by 21 percent—and even higher increases for Black women—a shameful consequence given the state already ranks 48th when it comes to maternal mortality rates.
We know that abortion bans harm people of color, people with low incomes, and those living in rural areas the most. People with means will always be able to access abortion — it’s the people who already face systemic barriers to care who will to continue to suffer if Indiana holds this special session. We are at a crisis point, and this is the moment for every elected leader who cares about health care to speak out and fight back.
Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates, Serving AK, HI, ID, IN, KY, WA (PPAA) is an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization educating residents and policymakers about reproductive health issues in Alaska, Hawai‘i, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky and Washington. PPAA lobbies and educates to advance Planned Parenthood's mission, and engages in limited electoral activities.