Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin will resume providing medical abortion services to patients in Wisconsin.
The announcement was made today, Sept. 14.
Over a year ago, on June 24, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, overturning Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pa. v. Casey and upending nearly 50 years of a constitutional right to abortion that Wisconsinites and Americans had relied upon for nearly five decades.
A year without care
This decision put reproductive freedom in Wisconsin on the line and caused a disturbance in services and access to care.
According to Gov. Evers’ administration, “Wisconsin remains one of several states with an outdated criminal abortion ban on the books—which was enacted in 1849 before the Civil War and at a time when Wisconsin women did not have the right to vote—healthcare providers and patients in Wisconsin were thrown into legal uncertainty, and nearly all abortion services in the state ceased.”
This antiquated legislation stripped women of this right, with a few exceptions.
Evers takes action
Days after the Dobbs decision was released, Gov. Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul filed a lawsuit to clarify that Wisconsin’s outdated, total criminal ban on abortion is unenforceable.
“I’ve been clear from the beginning that I would fight to restore reproductive freedom in our state with every power and every tool we have, and I’ve spent every day over the last year doing just that,” said Gov. Evers. “Today’s announcement from Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin as a result of our lawsuit regarding Wisconsin’s criminal abortion ban means Wisconsinites will once again be able to access vital reproductive healthcare and abortion services without exception for the first time since June of last year. This is critically important news for Wisconsin women and patients across our state who, for a year now, have been unable to access the healthcare they need when and where they need it.
On July 7, 2023, the Dane County Circuit Court denied a motion to dismiss the case and decided to allow that lawsuit to continue.
According to the ruling, the judge stated that “…Wis. Stat. § 940.04 does not prohibit a consensual medical abortion.”
Now, in response to the court’s ruling, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin is going to resume offering this medical service at specific clinics throughout the state to patients in Wisconsin.
“But I also want to be clear today: I will never let up. And we must not let up. Our fight to restore the same reproductive rights and freedoms Wisconsinites had up until the day the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe must continue,” Gov. Evers continued. “I will keep fighting like hell every day until Wisconsinites have the right to make their own healthcare decisions without interference from politicians who don’t know anything about their lives, their family, or their circumstances.”
Democrats working to protect reproductive rights
The fight to protect and defend reproductive freedom for Wisconsinites is working that Wisconsin democrats have been committed to for the past four years.
This includes the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe and decades of reproductive healthcare precedent with their ruling in Dobbs.
Per Evers’ release, in the past four years, the governor has vetoed several bills passed by the Legislature.
This has included several during the last legislative session that would have restricted access to abortion, inserted politics into the personal and private conversations between patients and their healthcare providers and made it harder for doctors to provide medically accurate information and treatment.
The issue expands beyond abortion care, many of these bills also sought to limit healthcare options for people seeking basic, necessary care, such as pregnancy care, cancer screening and prevention, sexually transmitted disease screening and treatment, and wellness exams.
In March 2023, Gov. Evers again joined legislative Democrats to reintroduce legislation to repeal Wisconsin’s 1849-era criminal abortion ban—a ban that was passed before the Civil War and before women had the right to vote and that prohibits nearly all abortions without exceptions for rape and incest.
The bill, Assembly Bill 218, would cleanly repeal Wisconsin’s criminal abortion ban, removing this archaic statute from our books and effectively reverting abortion access in Wisconsin to what it was on June 23, 2022, the day before the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs.
Abortion services in SE Wisconsin
An abortion clinic in Southeastern Wisconsin is located at the Planned Parenthood-Water Street Health Center of Milwaukee.
More information about services provided by Planned Parenthood can be found online.
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