These 18 States Are Introducing Bills To Protect Reproductive Rights

Photo: Jeenah Moon/Bloomberg/Getty Images.
Everyone take a moment to thank, *deep breath*, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin today. On Wednesday, these 18 states made moves to set up pro-choice legislation in an effort to counter the government's decisions to repeal Obamacare, defund Planned Parenthood, solidify the Hyde Amendment, and reinstate the Mexico City Policy.

Specifically, the states introduced bills that require things such as requiring crisis pregnancy centers to disclose that they're not medically licensed facilities, having increased access to emergency contraception for survivors of sexual assault, requiring abortion to be classified as healthcare, and requiring employers to not discriminate against employees who make healthcare decisions that go against their personal beliefs.

State and local legislators partnered with the Public Leadership Institute to form these bills, pulling information from PLI's A Playbook for Abortion Rights. The PLI's non-partisan guidance helps legislators form and advance their bills.

Funnily enough, half of the states working to make these changes were won by Donald Trump in the 2016 election, supporting the May 2016 Gallup poll that revealed that 79% of Americans think abortion should be legal under all or certain circumstances.

"We’ve been working for awhile on this — these things don’t happen overnight," Gloria Totten, founder and president of PLI, told Teen Vogue. “Today presents a major strategy by the reproductive rights movement — many, many state advocacy organizations and many, many pro-choice politicians who are saying, 'We’re not going to stay on the defense and we’re not going to let the federal government drive abortion strategy in our state and we’re going to get in front of it by putting forward policies that are proactive and expand access to care in this downright dangerous administration.'"
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