On 43rd Anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Wisconsin Republicans Turn Back Clock on Abortion Access
New laws move state backward on women’s health and push women dangerously close to days of back alley coat hanger abortions
January 22, 2016
MADISON – Today marks the 43rd anniversary of the Supreme Court’s landmark Roe v. Wade decision, which established that women have a constitutional right to choose abortion. While this was a significant milestone for women’s reproductive freedom, Wisconsin women now face more restrictions and less access to abortion care than at any other time in more than a generation. 43 years after the Roe v. Wade decision, the right to access safe and legal abortion remains under attack at the hands of Governor Scott Walker and legislative Republicans.
“Since gaining majorities in the legislature in 2011, Republicans have not once let up on their non-stop political attacks on access to women’s health care,” said Representative Lisa Subeck. “It is time for Republicans to stop inserting themselves into decisions that should be made privately between a woman and her doctor, without interference from politicians.”
During the past year alone, Republicans have passed three new restrictions on access to women’s health care, including:
- A ban on all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, even if a women’s health is in danger.
- Reductions to funding for birth control provided by Planned Parenthood and other women’s health centers.
- A move to hijack federal funding currently provided to Planned Parenthood and other women’s health centers for family planning services and preventative health care.
Since gaining control of both houses of the legislature and the Governor’s office in 2011, Republicans have enacted additional restrictions, including:
- Forced ultrasounds for all women seeking abortions, regardless of medical necessity.
- Requiring that abortion providers have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals, a requirement not demanded of other health care providers.
- Defunding of Planned Parenthood at the state level, forcing the closure of [Insert #] of Planned Parenthood clinics, leaving low-income and uninsured women throughout the state without access to family planning services, vital cancer screenings, or access to testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases.
- Repealed Wisconsin’s Healthy Youth Act, which had guaranteed that all sex-ed curriculum in our schools was comprehensive, age-appropriate, and medically and scientifically accurate.
- Banned coverage of abortion in health care plans offered through the exchange established by the Affordable Care Act.
- New restrictions on doctors providing medication abortions, resulting in the temporary suspension of all medication abortions in the state.
“The Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision marks a critical milestone for women’s rights and women’s health, yet Wisconsin Republicans are turning back the clock on access to abortion and other women’s health care,” said Rep. Subeck. “With only 3 abortion providers in 2 cities remaining in the state, the Republican obsession with inserting politicians into women’s health care decisions is pushing Wisconsin women dangerously close to a return to the days of coat hangers and back alley abortions.”