Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Abortion Ban on the Ballot in SD

I've spent much of the past two days being interviewed for various documentaries about abortion - there were three film crews here this weekend, and frankly, it's all a little overwhelming. That's the topic for another post, however.

So we collected nearly 38,000 signatures (we needed a little under 17,000) and it looks like the abortion ban will go to a statewide referendum vote in November. Of course, the names will be closely scrutinized and some will likely be contested - I'm thinking that the pro-ban people are freaking out right about now - but we're looking at a vote.

So the next phase is to make sure that people have the correct information. The other side has already tried to mislead the public by arguing that there is a rape and incest exemption in the bill - because a pregnant woman can always get Emergency Contraception. What's ironic about this is that the same legislators who supported the ban were given the opportunity to vote to mandate EC in the ER - and they did not, leaving it up to individual hospitals and pharmacies to determine whether or not to stock EC. And if you've ever tried to get EC in SD, you know that it's very difficult to do so.

Further, they've said that EC is effective for two weeks after conception, which is simply not the case - it is most effective prior to 72 hours, and while it is still effective up to 120 hours, it loses effectiveness as the hours tick by.

So expect lots of misinformation from the Leslie Unruh camp in the months to come.

If you want to help us educate the public and get out the vote, please consider a donation to SD Campaign for Healthy Families.

3 comments:

Anna said...

FYI, an example of the two-weeks-for-EC thing is here:

http://www.rapidcityjournal.com/articles/2006/05/31/news/opinion/opin714.txt

It's in the May 26 letters to the editor. I guess the author of the letter (Jo Dee Ingalls) says it's effective for "nearly" two weeks, but it's ridiculously inaccurate either way.

Oh, and, hi there!

plain(s)feminist said...

Hi, Anna!

The link didn't work for me, so I'm excerpting the letter here:

"The truth of HB1215 is this: A rape/incest victim has nearly two weeks to receive emergency contraceptive. If a minor is in need of this, her abuser has been caught. There is an exception for the life of the mother."

I have no idea what Jo Dee Ingalls means by that next to last sentence.

Kelsey said...

My mom got a letter in the Argus today about the 'exception' (horribly edited by the editorial page hacks), but we're going to have to keep hitting that point over and over and over again.