Governor Noem’s pledge to introduce legislation banning abortion in some cases is latest attack on a safe, legal medical procedure.
Sioux Falls, SD — Today marks 48 years since the Supreme Court case, Roe v. Wade, established the legal right to an abortion. Just last week, Governor Noem announced her intent to introduce an anti-abortion bill to the Legislature. While the bill language has not yet been released, Governor Noem made it clear the legislation would ban some abortions in South Dakota.
“Today we celebrate the anniversary of Roe v. Wade and the right to safe, legal abortion in the U.S.,” said Kristin Hayward, Manager of Advocacy and Development in South Dakota for Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota Action Fund. “Thanks to this landmark decision, abortion is recognized as essential health care in this country. At the same time, we cannot lose sight of the constant attacks on our reproductive freedom.”
Currently, Planned Parenthood operates the only health center in South Dakota offering abortion care. South Dakota politicians have placed burdensome and unnecessary restrictions on patients who are seeking abortion, against the recommendation of health care experts including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. South Dakota law requires patients wait 72 hours before receiving abortion care, requires medical professionals to tell patients medically inaccurate information about abortion care, and bans patients from receiving abortion care via telehealth. These unnecessary barriers place a disproportionate burden on people who live in rural areas, those with low-incomes, and people of color.
“The medically unnecessary restrictions that lawmakers have put on abortion care are not about South Dakotans’ health and wellbeing,” said Hayward. “These laws are about creating barriers to abortion and ultimately about their goal to eliminate safe, legal abortion in South Dakota. We will not let that happen. South Dakotans deserve the freedom to make the best health care decisions for their individual circumstances, in consultation with their health care provider. We are not in their shoes.”
With Justice Amy Coney Barrett confirmed to the Supreme Court in 2020, solidifying a 6-3 majority hostile to reproductive rights, abortion access is at even greater risk. Right now, there are 18 cases only one step away from the Supreme Court—meaning Roe could be overturned or gutted, eliminating what little access is left. Since 2011, more than 480 abortion restrictions have been enacted in states, making abortion inaccessible for people with low incomes, those in rural areas, and communities of color who are already forced to navigate a legacy of racist and discriminatory systems.
Founded in 1992, the Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota Action Fund is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit organization. As the advocacy and electoral arm of PPMNS, we mobilize supporters of all parties to defend and increase access to family planning services and fact based, medically accurate sexuality education. We work to inspire and engage citizens to take up the cause of reproductive health and rights through education, electoral activity, grassroots organizing and legislative advocacy.