Pro-Choice News Roundup

It’s been a busy week as far as pro-choice news is concerned.  Here’s a roundup in case you missed anything.

Idaho woman challenges the state’s late-term abortion ban – Houston Chronicle
UK is debating mandatory counseling for abortion patients – The Guardian
RU-486 may become available in Australia – The Australian
Kansas told they have to fund Planned Parenthood – Businessweek
What new legal obstacles mean for women in Ohio – RH Reality Check

Bill Restricting Medical Abortions Signed into Law by Jan Brewer

Jan Brewer, along with a litany of other anti-choice politicians in Arizona, have made it a legislative priority to limit women’s access to abortion and other reproductive health care services throughout the state. Between the bill approved in the Arizona Senate earlier this week to ban race and sex motivated abortions, and the piece of legislation to limit out access to RU-486, one thing is very clear: women’s reproductive health, rights, and justice are under attack in Arizona and the anti-choice community is hard at work organizing a coordinated assault on reproductive freedom.

One of the recent strategies to zero out access comes in the form of HB2416, which Jan Brewer signed into law Saturday night. Once the law takes effect, women seeking access to RU-486 will no longer be able to get the pill from a Nurse Practitioner and will instead only be able to get it from a Physician. The problem here is simple. There are nowhere near enough trained Doctors available in rural communities throughout Arizona, and women who live in cities like Flagstaff or Yuma often times depend on Nurse Practitioners to distribute the RU-486. [Read more...]

What is the Abortion Pill?

ru-486There is a lot of misconceptions about mifepristone, also known as RU-486 or the abortion pill. Many on the anti-choice side say that mifepristone is the same as emergency contraception, which is also known as Plan B, but they are not the same thing.

Mifepristone is a steroid that is used to induce abortion. It was first approved in France in 1980, however the FDA did not approve mifepristone until September 28, 2000. Mifepristone can be used to induce abortion up to 49 days after the beginning of the last menstrual period. The drug must be administered by a physician, and it is not available in a pharmacy.

Emergency contraception, or Plan B, is different. It is taken by women who are not pregnant who want to prevent pregnancy. It must be taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex. It has no effect on an already established pregnancy. Emergency contraception is available over the counter for women who are over 17 years old.

For more info, click over to Planned Parenthood’s website.

Australian teen faces jail for home abortion

Just when I begin to get complacent about the constant struggle that women face across the globe for reproductive rights, stories like this are thrust into my consciousness, not soon to leave. Tegan Leach, a 19 year old girl from Queensland, Australia and her boyfriend, 21 year old Sergie Brennan face serious jail time for procuring drugs to induce abortion. The couple acquired the drug, a Chinese version of RU-486, from a Ukrainian source, and the evidence used to arrest her were the empty blister packs from whence the drugs came. Although RU-486 is technically “legal” in Australia, a maze of contradictory laws and unclear regulations scare most physicians into refusing to prescribe the drug.

Leach, who chose to terminate her pregnancy because she felt that she was not ready to parent, faces up to seven years in prison for her “crime,” and her boyfriend faces three years for helping her buy the drugs. Upon her arrest, Queensland hospitals began refusing drug-induced abortions, despite their “legal” status. [Read more...]

Wednesday News Roundup

mouse2Smart Girls’ Guide to Good Sex – Huff Po
Washington Abortion Clinic Celebrates 30th Anniversary – Seattle Times
Abortion Pill Hasn’t Broadened Access – Reuters
The Choices Abortion Providers Face – Washington Post
Family Planning Facts – National Family Planning & Reproductive Health Association