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Wed Apr 24, 2019, 12:02 AM

Illinois Must Act to Shore Up Abortion Rights -- in Part, to Save Missouri Women

Across the country, states are cutting off access to abortion services, denying women the essential reproductive health care they need. Emboldened by the Trump administration’s Supreme Court picks, conservative lawmakers are growing more and more confident that Roe v. Wade will be overturned — and they’re already taking steps to outlaw abortion when that happens.

Here in the Midwest, Illinois is largely viewed as an island of access in a sea of hostility towards reproductive rights and abortion access. In the past weeks, the Ohio state Senate approved a ban that would bar women from seeking abortions after just six weeks of pregnancy. In Missouri — a state with just one abortion clinic in operation — lawmakers are also moving to outlaw abortion after six weeks, which is essentially an outright ban for everyone. Missouri has also introduced a “trigger law” that would immediately make abortion illegal in the state if Roe is overturned.

It is absolutely critical that Illinois remain a place where women can access to the care they need. At the Hope Clinic for Women in Granite City, where I provide abortion care, we already receive more than half of our patients from Missouri. In fact, in 2017, more than 5,500 women from outside states traveled to Illinois in search of abortion care.

We need to protect the ability of healthcare providers in Illinois to provide the essentials of reproductive healthcare. The Reproductive Health Act, introduced in the Illinois House by state Representative Kelly Cassidy, would do just that.

Read more: https://www.riverfronttimes.com/newsblog/2019/04/23/illinois-must-act-to-shore-up-abortion-rights-in-part-to-save-missouri-women

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