Missouri Proposes Legislation to Restrict Abortion Care Out of State
law, SB8, has provided inspiration to other states in how to avoid federal regulation of abortion. SB8 allows anyone to file lawsuits against those they believe have had an abortion of a fetus with a heartbeat, in the state of Texas. This type of enforcement by “bounty hunting” has allowed the state to not take responsibility, and therefore is argued to not be violating Roe v. Wade. Therefore, many residents have been forced to seek safe abortion care in surrounding states.
Now, with the success of Texas’s SB8’s ability to stay in effect, other states have begun to propose bills that use this same strategy. Unfortunately, states aren’t stopping at banning abortions within their borders. States are now making it difficult to travel out of state to receive legal abortion care.
A recent proposal in Missouri could make it illegal to “aid and abet” abortions, even if performed legally in another state. Again, taking inspiration from the Texas law, SB8, which allows filed lawsuits against those they believe have violated the law. Under this same bill, “aid and abet” in abortion would be anything from driving people seeking abortion care across state lines, to blocking to certain abortion-related websites or any advertisement such as the billboards from Illinois advertising easier to access abortion care.
This bill would not only affect patients needing abortion, but any organizations that work to ensure women get the safe abortion care they need. For example, the Missouri Abortion fund has supplied financial aid to 1,866 Missouri residents seeking abortion care in the last year. Missouri also passed a law in 2019 that would ban all abortions if Roe v. Wade is overturned.
Banning safe abolition care can create feelings of crisis, fear and confusion. Laws like these threaten people’s safety as well as quality of life. Here at Southwestern Women’s, we have been directly affected by Texas’s SB8 at both our abortion clinics in Texas and Albuquerque. We understand the financial, emotional It is worrisome to think of what legislation will be proposed in the future.