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Senate Bill 1, a bill that would prevent people from getting abortions as early as six weeks into a pregnancy, now heads to the S.C. House

COLUMBIA — Today the South Carolina State Senate passed Senate Bill 1, which would prevent a person from obtaining an abortion as early as six weeks into a pregnancy — only about two weeks after a missed period. This is before many people even know they are pregnant. 

As a leading provider of sexual and reproductive health care, including abortion, Planned Parenthood South Atlantic opposes this bill.

Vicki Ringer, S.C. Director of Public Affairs for Planned Parenthood South Atlantic, released the following statement:

“The S.C. Senate has made banning abortion their top priority in the face of the urgent health and economic crisis impacting families across the state. As people continue to get sick and die from COVID-19 and more and more families are struggling to make ends meet, state leaders are ramming through legislation that poses a serious threat to people’s health, freedom, and bodily autonomy in South Carolina. This is absolutely shameful.

A person’s decision about their own health care should be made between them and their doctor — without government interference. South Carolina needs real leadership now more than ever, not politicians pushing their own agendas.”

Abortion bans disproportionately harm those that already have the least access to quality health care, including people with low-incomes, people of color, and those who live in rural communities.

Six-week bans on abortion have been struck down each time they have been challenged. Courts in states like Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Dakota, Iowa, Ohio, and Tennessee have blocked those states’ bans, acknowledging that it is unconstitutional for a state to prohibit a person from obtaining an abortion before viability—regardless of any exceptions made in the law.

As the country’s most trusted provider of sexual and reproductive health care, Planned Parenthood urges members of the media to use medically-accurate terms in their coverage of policies related to health and medical procedures, including abortion. Political terms such as “heartbeat bill” are not grounded in medical science. Medical experts, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, have said the term does not “reflect medical accuracy or clinical understanding.” Instead, “6-week abortion ban” is the recommended, medically-accurate term to describe such a bill.