Michigan Women End Year With Less Access To Abortion

Michigan Republicans served up a hearty “forget you” to women, passing H.B. 5711, a massive abortion omnibus bill at the end of the legislative session to close out a year marked by long, contentious battles over abortion in the state.

The bill bans the tele-med prescription of medical abortion, enacts a host of new and costly regulations designed to close clinics, and most offensively, constructs new barriers between women and health care by forcing women who need an abortion to undergo a “coercion” screen to make sure they are making the decision to abort of their own free will. And all of it is done under the guise of protecting women.

Instead, the bill does just the opposite. Women who live in rural communities where there are no clinics readily available are now all but pushed into riskier surgical abortions since telemedicine is increasingly a health care lifeline in these communities. The coercion screen presumes competent women either have not thought through or worse, are simply not capable, of coming to a decision to abort on their own. Tellingly, when Michigan Democrats attempted to amend the bill to include a provision that would attach criminal liability for anyone who coerces a woman into keeping an unwanted pregnancy just as it does for coercing an abortion, Republican lawmakers killed the amendment.

And as we’ve seen in places like Mississippi, passing unnecessary and complicated regulatory provisions, like requiring all clinics that perform 10 or more abortions per year to function as essentially a free-standing hospital, does nothing to ensure women have access to safer medical procedures. Instead, it closes clinics which cuts off access to health care which puts women’s lives in danger.

Gov. Rick Snyder did prove he’s more of a corporatist than a pure evangelical misogynist though, vetoing one measure that would have banned abortion coverage in private insurance contracts because, after some “soul searching” Snyder stated he believed “it is wrong to tell insurers and employers what they can negotiate in their contracts.” So there’s that.

And that’s how the year closes in the war on women–almost exactly as it started, with legislators pushing through unnecessary and unpopular anti-abortion legislation all in the name of “saving women.”

 

Related Stories:

Michigan Anti-Abortion Bill Barrels Toward Thursday Vote

Michigan Anti-Abortion Bill Among The Worst This Year

MI GOP: ‘Vagina’ Offensive To Say, Necessary To Regulate

 

Photo from CAVE CANEM via flickr.

168 comments

Alicia Guevara
Alicia Guevara3 years ago

:(

Christine Jones
Christine J.3 years ago

It's a complex issue, to put it mildly.

James Wilcox
James Wilcox3 years ago

Heather: Still wondering which "shade" of feminist advocate for children's rights, as opposed to the "shade" that fought against Barbara Boxer's Violence Against Children Act. And you're right, buried in the sidebar is the heading "Children" though no listing at the bottom of the home page let alone the top. None of the articles could be considered advocacy and none of the writers consider themselves childrens rights advocates.

Child abuse, other than sexual, is a feminist non-issue. Where's that "in your face" attitude when it comes to child pandering, starvation, caged confinement, murder...? The fact that most of those crimes are perpetrated by women doesn't fit in with the patriarchal political ideology does it?

Heather G.
Heather G.3 years ago

Well I clarified what I meant so now you know for sure I wasn't talking about child abuse. Open any article scroll to the bottom and voila! "Children", go to the top and click on "more topics" viola! "Children".

James Wilcox
James Wilcox3 years ago

Heather cont.

No mention of "Children" let alone Childrens Rights. Like I said, feminist priorities don't include child abuse because women are more abusive toward children than men. If men killed the most children we'd never hear the end of it.

James Wilcox
James Wilcox3 years ago

@ Heather: "There's no feminist war on children and children's advocacy is not anti-feminist. Trying to turn a complicated issue into an either/or which side are you on debate is NARROW MINDED. If you only see black and white you're missing a whole bunch of grey."

Sure sounds like you are saying child abuse has shades of grey. That WAS the issue. Please show me documentation of feminist child advocacy. They killed the Violence Against Children Act. Child abuse causes criminal behavior including rape. If you want to stop rape you need to prevent child abuse and help victims to heal. Perhaps feminists killed Barbara Boxer's Violence Against Children Act for job security. They're making a ton of money off VAWA to spread lies like 1 in 71 men are raped in their lifetime. Just heard that today on NPR's Diane Rehms Show. Even Oprah would agree it's 1 in 6. But VAWA doesn't spend money on programs for abused boys because according to their imaginary statistics there's no need. Thus guaranteeing the next generation of "potential rapists." Like I said, job security.

@ Heather: "if children's advocacy were a feminist issue there would be a daily heading for it here at Care2. There is not" WRONG!! There is a section in causes called "Children."

The top of my page says " Animals, Women, Politics, Food, LGTB, Global Development."

No mention of "Children" let alone Childrens Rights. Like I said, feminist priorities don't include child abuse because women are more abusive toward

Heather G.
Heather G.3 years ago

"if children's advocacy were a feminist issue there would be a daily heading for it here at Care2. There is not" WRONG!! There is a section in causes called "Children."

Heather G.
Heather G.3 years ago

Plus is anyone really IN FAVOR OF child abuse?? Or is it something you bring up to make feminism and feminists look bad, just like discussions of gay marriage inevitably lead to someone bringing up pedophilia.

Heather G.
Heather G.3 years ago

FEMINISM is not black and white, it has many shades of grey. FEMINISM not child abuse. Feminism NOT child abuse. Got it????

Heather G.
Heather G.3 years ago

No thats NOT what I meant, and you don't what I "feel". There are many shades of FEMINISM!!!!! Feminism not child abuse! FEMINISM not child abuse!!!! Got it now?