A federal judge has blocked parts of a law that would effectively force Missisippi’s one remaining abortion clinic to shut down. However, the judge allowed certain restrictions of the MS legislature’s new abortion-restricitng law to remain. MS had passed a law, which went into effect July 1, that required doctors who perform abortions have admitting privileges at a local hospital. OB/GYNs at the Jackson Women’s Health Organization have applied for such privileges, but have not yet been granted them. Last week, a federal judge said the doctors need to acquire their admitting privileges but while they do so, they will not be subject to punishment for breaking the law. Keep reading »
Women in in Mississippi can breathe easy, at least temporarily: at the eleventh hour on Sunday night, a federal judge blocked a law that would have effectively closed the state’s only abortion clinic. A law was set to go into effect on Monday that would have required doctors at the Jackson Women’s Health Organization to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. However, that was not going to happen as all four of the clinic’s OB-GYNs live out of state, in part because they, their families and neighbors are horrendously harassed by anti-abortion extremists. Only one of the practicing OB-GYNs has admitting privileges at the local hospital; the others have not been granted them yet. Had the law gone into effect today, women’s access to safe and legal abortions would have been even more impeded as they would have been required to drive out of state, which requires time and money. Keep reading »
When it comes to teen pregnancy, Mississippi has the highest rate in the nation. The state has 55 births per 1,000 girls ages 15 to 19 — a whopping 60 percent above the national average, according to the Centers for Disease Control. And it is not too difficult to see the culprit: abstinence-only sex education dominates the state and schools are only allowed to teach, you know, birth control if they got special permission. Keep reading »
That’s a relief.
Mississippi voters failed to pass an anti-abortion “fetal personhood” amendment, which would have defined the beginning of life at conception and therefore criminalized all abortions — including those resulting from rape or incest. Initiative 26, as the ballot measure was known as, also would have criminalized IVF treatments and some forms of birth control because they both involve fertilized eggs. If it had passed, MS would have had the strictest restrictions against abortion in the country. Keep reading »
Tomorrow, Election Day, voters in Mississippi will vote on a fetal personhood amendment to define a fetus as a person in the state constitution, thereby criminalizing all abortion. Initiative 26 would define a “person” as “every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning, or the functional equivalent thereof.” If it passes, surgical abortions would be banned, the abortion pill would be banned, and, according to a Personhood USA spokesman who spoke to NPR, even birth control pills would be banned. Keep reading »