Abortions later in pregnancy are under attack.All abortion bans, whether at 6 weeks or 20 weeks, are about politics, not medicine. We know these decisions are complex, and conversations surrounding them can be uncomfortable. But one-size-fits-all restrictions on abortion are never the right solution and they can cause real, lasting harm for people seeking care. We believe that a woman’s health should guide important medical decisions--not political interference.
Abortion is Health Care
“My husband and I were both raised Catholic. We never, ever thought we would have to make a decision like this.”
Protecting Access for Women of Color
“When we are talking about putting a ban on abortion, you are literally creating another set of obstacles for women of color.”
It’s Not a Political Decision, It’s a Medical One
“Nobody goes into a pregnancy imagining that they’re going to be faced with this kind of medical crisis...Abortion was the right decision, and we’ve never regretted that decision.”
Get the Facts
There is a ton of misinformation and politically charged rhetoric about abortions later in pregnancy. It’s important to remember the facts:
- Abortion is safe at any point in pregnancy
- About 1% of abortions in America take place after 21 weeks
- Abortions later in pregnancy are often very expensive, and are rarely covered under health insurance
- The majority of Coloradans and Americans believe that health should drive these important medical decisions, and that everyone should be able to decide what is best for them and their family, based on their own unique circumstances.
There are many reasons why someone may need to consider abortion later in pregnancy, including newly discovered threats to their health or life, fetal non-viability or a serious fetal diagnosis.
Existing financial barriers often push abortion care later into pregnancy. Such barriers include the high cost of getting an abortion, lack of insurance coverage, documentation status, cultural barriers, the need to travel out-of-state to receive care due to in-state restrictions, and/or the time it takes to save enough money to cover the cost of the medical procedure.
Any ban on abortion later in pregnancy would force someone to carry their pregnancy to term or leave the state to obtain abortion care.
Because of restrictive bans in neighboring states, Colorado is considered a regional safe haven for women and families who need abortions later in pregnancy. If a ban were to pass in our state, there would be few other places to go to receive potentially life-saving care.
There is a coordinated nationwide effort to ban all abortions. Politically-motivated restrictions that make it harder to get an abortion—increasing costs, making it difficult to find a provider, adding logistical hurdles like travel days and multiple doctors appointments—can force someone who began seeking an abortion earlier in their pregnancy to have an abortion later in pregnancy. A ban on abortions later in pregnancy would leave women and their families without options.
- Over 39 states have implemented medically-unnecessary requirements for doctors and hospitals who provide abortions. This limits the number of places where someone can get an abortion, forcing them in many cases to have to take time off work and/or travel long distances to get a simple medical procedure.
- 26 states have state-mandated waiting periods which require someone to wait an unnecessary amount of time (typically 24 hours) between her first consultation with a doctor and receiving abortion care. This causes a patient to take two separate trips to the doctor’s office, adding additional planning and, in some cases, the need to take time off work. This barrier can push abortion care much further into pregnancy.
- In 12 states, abortion is not covered (or is only partially covered) by private insurance, making abortions—including abortions later in pregnancy— unnecessarily expensive or completely out of reach. Public funding is available to cover healthcare for low-income people through Medicaid, however funding for abortion care specifically—including in cases of rape, incest, or life endangerment—is restricted in many states.
When a ban passes in one state, it is more likely to appear on ballots and in state legislatures across the country. If a ban passes in Colorado, it will embolden efforts by anti-abortion forces to chip away at access to healthcare here and around the country.