Statement on the August 1, 2018 announcement by Maryland House Speaker Mike Busch about the intention to pursue a constitutional amendment to protect abortion access
Since learning of the U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement, advocates for reproductive freedom have been discussing ways to use state legal, legislative, and political processes to defend and advance an individual’s right to abortion care. Each state is engaged in strategy and coalition meetings to identify how best to proceed with the increasing threats to criminalize abortion in our country.
Every single day, women and girls who suspect or may know that they are facing an unexpected pregnancy walk into a building, thinking it is a reproductive health clinic. The facility has a name that communicates providing pregnancy health-related services inside. There is a normal waiting room, people in lab coats, magazines scattered on tables, and examining rooms. It seems almost hard to believe that they not are visiting a reproductive health clinic like a Planned Parenthood —instead, they walked into a fake health center, otherwise known as a crisis pregnancy center that was built, funded, and promoted by an extreme, anti-choice local or national group which works day and night to impose its ideology on the rest of us. In fact, there are 2700 of these centers nationwide, and there are currently 45 in our state alone.
NARAL Pro-Choice Maryland Fund has released its 2018 report on anti-choice crisis pregnancy centers in Maryland. Entitled “When will the deception end: an investigative report on anti-choice crisis pregnancy centers in Maryland”, describes how the centers present themselves to the public to attract potential pregnant individuals and the types of services they actually offer across the state. The report’s release is within weeks of the expected U.S. Supreme Court decision on NIFLA vs. Becerra, which could uphold a 2015 California law requiring certain disclosure of these centers regarding their services and staffing which often pose as medical clinics, and days after the announcement of a gag-rule on Title X funding for authentic family planning clinics issued by the Trump/Pence Administration on May 18 th, 2018.