Ohio State Legislature Moves to Make Abortion Illegal
For Immediate Release: Dec. 7, 2016
“After years of passing anti-abortion laws under the guise of protecting women’s health and safety, they lay bare their true motives: to ban abortion in the state of Ohio.”
Washington, DC — Last night, the Ohio State legislature rushed through one of the most extreme abortion restrictions in the country –– a 6-week abortion ban, intended to make abortion illegal in the state of Ohio. The 6-week abortion bill was passed as an amendment to a bill that had nothing to do with abortion. The bill was immediately met with protests, including dozens of people protesting at Governor Kasich’s house. The Ohio legislature also plans to pass a 20-week abortion ban before the end of the week.
Since 2011, the State of Ohio, lead by John Kasich, has launched an all-out attack on women’s access to reproductive health care in the state, passing 18 measures to restrict Ohio women from accessing care in the state.
Politicians in the Ohio State Legislature just passed one of the most extreme abortion bans in the entire country. And they’re not stopping there –– they plan to pass a 20-week abortion ban before the end of the week. After years of passing anti-abortion laws under the guise of protecting women’s health and safety, they lay bare their true motives: to ban abortion in the state of Ohio. Politicians have no right to dictate Ohio women’s personal medical decisions.
Make no mistake –– these bills punish women. We’ve already seen how restrictions force women to travel hundreds of miles and cross state lines, which many women with low incomes cannot afford to do. We call on Governor John Kasich to veto these unconstitutional abortion bans.— Dawn Laguens, Executive Vice President of Planned Parenthood Action Fund
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.
Today, politicians jammed through a six week abortion ban that does not include exceptions for rape and incest. Not only is this shameful, but it’s dangerous for women. And the legislature plans to pass a 20-week abortion bill later this week. If signed into law, these bills would force women to travel long distances and cross state lines to access abortion.
For many women, the expense and time these restrictions would force upon them would make access 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.— Iris E. Harvey, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio
The 6 week ban could prevent women from getting abortions as early as six weeks into a pregnancy; this is before some women even know that they are pregnant. This bill could take away a woman’s right to make her own medical decisions before she would have known she had a decision to make. The legislation also would enforce penalties for physicians who provide abortion. The 20-week abortion ban contains no exceptions for irreversible fetal anomalies, rape, incest, or mental health concerns of the woman.
The legislation now goes to Governor John Kasich’s desk. Governor John Kasich has ushered in one of the most restrictive, anti-woman state governments in the country.
John Kasich’s record decimating women’s health care in Ohio:
Enacted 18 measures to restrict access to reproductive health care and nearly half of the abortion providers in the state have shuttered.
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, mandate ultrasounds before a woman can get an abortion, and require medically unnecessary and burdensome requirements that have shut down health centers.
Signed legislation which defunded Planned Parenthood and slashed Healthy Moms, Healthy Babies – a Planned Parenthood program that specifically helped prevent infant mortality -- the largest infant mortality prevention program in the state, having served hundreds of new or expectant mothers in the last year alone. This in spite of the fact that the State of 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 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 a gag order on rape crisis counselors that prohibited them 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
That came despite overwhelming opposition from public health experts and Ohioans in Columbus and online.