It has been a tough week for reproductive justice.
First, fresh from repealing health care for many vulnerable Americans, House Republicans introduced one of the most restrictive abortion bans we have ever seen. And now, anti-choice advocates have raised a firestorm over the case of Kermit Gosnell, a doctor in Philadelphia accused of gruesome crimes against pregnant women, including several illegal late term abortions.
Michelle Goldberg writes eloquently about how the Gosnell case demonstrates that what women need is safe access to abortions, not more restrictions. She writes:
Gosnell’s clinic was in no way representative of most abortion facilities, which is why the country’s largest organization of abortion providers, the National Abortion Federation, refused him membership and testified against him to the grand jury. In fact, Gosnell’s crimes only underline the need for all women to have access to affordable and genuinely safe providers. His patients subjected themselves to terrible abuses because that’s what women will do when they’re desperate and they don’t see other options….
No woman would subject herself to such a place if she thought she had somewhere else to go. Forty-one-year-old Karnamaya Mongar, who died after being given an overdose of sedatives at the clinic, was a refugee who had recently arrived in the U.S. from a resettlement camp in Nepal. She couldn’t read English and may not have had any idea how to find a decent clinic. Minors went to Gosnell’s clinic—it was the one place they could skirt state law and get abortions without parental consent. Gosnell performed illegal late-term abortions on women who should have been cared for months earlier.
NYAAF works day-in and day-out to help women get the care they need so that they don’t have to resort to unsafe and dangerous places. Help us help them. Click here to donate.