Reproductive Rights

Women’s Voices supports a woman’s right to make her own decisions about her reproductive health.

Missouri Senate Sends Tougher Abortion Law to Gov. Greitens

Working in a special summer session , the Senate voted 22-9 to endorse a House proposal that appears likely win the approval of the Republican governor.  If signed by Greitens, the new law is likely destined to be challenged in court.  “This political theater is an expensive and ideological ploy to end abortion access in the state,” said M’Evie Mead, director of policy and organizing for Planned Parenthood Advocates in Missouri, in a statement. “The notion that this session has any benefit for patients’ health and safety is nonsense, and Missourians are smart enough to know that.” Read about the bill here

Oregon Moves to Protect Abortion Rights

July 5, 2017

A bill in Oregon aims to protect women in the state from losing their rights to essential health benefits.  If the bill is passed, Oregon would follow in the footsteps of California, Maryland, Connecticut, and Washington state.   Each of those four states have instituted legal protections at the state level to protect abortion access if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.   Read more here

MO budget cuts family planning funds for uninsured women, restricts provider choice

May 15, 2017

The budget lawmakers are sending to Gov. Eric Greitens contains a provision that prohibits hospitals and clinics from participating in the Missouri Women’s State-Funded Health Services Program if the organization also provides abortion services, as defined by a state law for sexual education in schools.  The budget also cuts the program’s funding by $2.1 million.


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Judge Plans to Block Abortion-Restricting Rules

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) April 5 — A federal judge says he plans to issue a preliminary injunction to block abortion-restricting rules in Missouri similar to ones in Texas that the U.S. Supreme Court struck down last year.  Read more

 Senate votes to block funds to Planned Parenthood

March 30 (UPI) — Senate Republicans needed to call on Vice President Mike Pence and an ailing GOP lawmaker to pass legislation that seeks to give states the authority to withhold certain federal funding from Planned Parenthood.  Read more 

Missouri hospitals forgo family planning funds as abortion rule goes into effect

“At issue is a $10.8 million portion of the state’s Medicaid program, which covers pelvic exams, tests for sexually transmitted diseases and  family planning services for about 70,000 low-income Missouri women. To prevent violating a federal law that says Medicaid patients must be allowed to choose their own provider, the state is rejecting about $8.3 million annually in federal funds, and paying the difference with money from the state.”

“The MHA is counseling its members to not submit claims to the program after providing an abortion, regardless of the circumstances.”    read more here

MO to Cut Funds to Organizations Providing Abortions 

Providing abortions will put hospitals on the list of providers that may lose a portion of their Medicaid funding for women’s health services, due to a budget amendment passed last year by the Missouri legislature. Read more.

MO Legislature Considers Bills to Further Restrict Access to Abortion

January 18, 2017–Heartened by the November election, Missouri’s abortion opponents are considering a raft of bills – some old, some new – to expand the state’s restrictions on abortion-related matters and their enforcement.  Read more

HBO Film Focuses on Abortion Restrictions in MO

(CNN)Abortion: Stories Women Tell” is HBO’s latest advocacy-oriented documentary, chronicling the impact of Missouri abortion restrictions on those forced to cross the Illinois border to seek procedures. Spare and sober, it’s a solid look at how raw the issue remains, though given how entrenched opinions are, it’s unlikely to change many hearts or minds.

The film will air on HBO next year.  Click here for trailer.

 June 27 Supreme Court Rules on Abortion Case – protecting abortion access

Women’s Voices Raised for Social Justice believes women must be respected as moral decision-makers, making choices based upon their own religious beliefs and traditions.  We are gratified by the Supreme Court decision allowing women to have access to abortion care.

From The New York Times:  The Supreme Court on Monday struck down parts of a restrictive Texas law that could have reduced the number of abortion clinics in the state to about 10 from what was once a high of roughly 40.

The 5-to-3 decision was the court’s most sweeping statement on abortion rights since Planned Parenthood v. Casey in 1992. It applied a skeptical and exacting version of that decision’s “undue burden” standard to find that the restrictions in Texas must fall.  read full article here

read “What’s Really at Stake in the Supreme Court’s Abortion Decision” here.

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You can also read here about Dr. Colleen McNicholas, who has admitting privileges only in St. Louis, which means if HB2 was upheld she would no longer be able to perform abortions anywhere outside St. Louis.   After the article was written, the Supreme Court struck down parts of the law that would have restricted the number of clinics in Texas.

Dr. McNicholas is seen here with her son at a celebration of the Supreme Court ruling which  will have implications for similar laws in Missouri and other states.

Women’s Voices Position: Reproductive Choice