In a declaration of sorts released last Thursday, Planned Parenthood – the long and often under fire healthcare organization – sent out a report in response to the restrictive abortion state laws being passed recently. Planned Parenthood Director Dr. Leana Wen told the Huffington Post:
“If anyone had any doubts before, what we’ve seen in recent weeks has made it very clear that we are in a state of emergency for women’s health in America.”
Highlights of the “Nationwide Public Health Crisis” report include:
- 90 percent of counties across the nation lack a provider of abortion care
- Six states currently have only one provider (KY, MS, MO, ND, SD, WV); on June 1, one state may have none (MO)
- Six states enacted bills that ban abortion care before most women know they are pregnant, including a near-total ban on abortion care enacted in Alabama
The report was issued on the same day that Louisiana Governor and pro-life Democrat John Bel Edwards signed one of the strictest abortion bans in the country, known as a “heartbeat” bill, a move that has been condemned by the New Orleans City Council and reproduction rights groups across the state. Louisiana is the fifth state this year to sign such a bill into law.
We now wait for the courts to decide the fate of legislation such as this, and for the potential repercussions to come from industries that disagree with the signing.
Bill Arceneaux has been an independent writer and film critic in the New Orleans area since 2011, working with outlets like Film Threat, DIG Baton Rouge, Crosstown Conversations, and Occupy. He is a member of the Southeastern Film Critics Association and is Rotten Tomatoes approved.