Oklahoma Criminalizes Providing Abortion Care
Statement by Vicki Saporta, President and CEO of the National Abortion Federation (NAF):
Today, the Oklahoma legislature passed a bill to effectively ban abortion care in the state by making it a felony to provide the procedure.
While it’s the first time we’ve seen this specific tactic used, this bill is nothing more than an attempt to ban abortion and intimidate doctors who provide safe, legal care.
This extreme bill is blatantly unconstitutional, and we expect it would be challenged if Governor Mary Fallin signs it into law. The Supreme Court has consistently held that states may not ban abortion care before viability.
According to the bill, doctors who provide abortion care could have their medical licenses revoked, and could be charged with a felony and punished with between one and three years in prison. This would have a chilling effect on the provision of abortion care in Oklahoma, which is exactly what the bill is designed to do.
Anti-choice legislators in Oklahoma have a long history of trying to restrict women’s access to abortion care. We urge Governor Fallin to veto this unconstitutional abortion ban.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, May 19, 2016
Melissa Fowler, National Abortion Federation
202.667.5881, ext 217; 202.595.4395 (after hours/cell)
The National Abortion Federation (NAF) is the professional association of abortion providers. Our members include individuals, private and non-profit clinics, Planned Parenthood affiliates, women’s health centers, physicians’ offices, and hospitals who together care for approximately half the women who choose abortion in the U.S. and Canada each year. Our members also include public hospitals and both public and private clinics in Mexico City and private clinics in Colombia.