Louisiana Among Worst States For Abortion Restrictions Based on Lies, According New GUTTMACHER Analysis


Lift Louisiana Launches State-Focused Lies into Laws Education Campaign

NEW ORLEANS, LA—May 9, 2017—Louisiana is among the worst states when it comes to passing abortion restrictions that conflict with scientific evidence, according to a new report released today by the Guttmacher Institute. In response to these findings, Lift Louisiana, a leading progressive organization engaged in reproductive justice advocacy, announced today the launch of a state-focused Lies into Laws education campaign to highlight the staggering number of abortion restrictions based on lies that prevent women from accessing reproductive care.

Guttmacher’s analysis focuses on 10 categories of abortion restrictions that lack a foundation in rigorous science. Among the highest-offending states, Louisiana is tied for second place with restrictions in seven of the categories considered. Among these are a 72-hour mandatory delay, one of the longest in the country; mandatory biased counseling on mental health; and a law requiring clinics to comply with hospital-like facilities requirements, despite a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down these types of laws as unconstitutional. In just the last five years, more than half the clinics in Louisiana have been forced to close their doors, leaving only three clinics available to nearly one million women of reproductive age in the state.  

“This new data from the Guttmacher Institute underscores the lengths to which politicians in Louisiana—and across the country—are willing to go to pass laws that make it more difficult or even impossible for women to access abortion care,” said Michelle Erenberg, director of Lift Louisiana. “Politicians are willing to disregard science and evidence, and it needs to stop. We are hopeful that the Lies into Laws campaign will help raise awareness about these dangerous restrictions and encourage Louisianans to fight back.”

“The reality is, the women in my community and state continue to pay the price for these lies every day,” said Kathaleen Pittman, clinic administrator at Hope Medical, one of Louisiana’s three remaining clinics. “With real, life-altering consequences at stake, there simply is no place for false information in health care. All women deserve medically accurate information and access to a full range of reproductive health care, including abortion care.”

Lift Louisiana is partnering with the National Partnership for Women & Families as part of a multi-state Lies into Laws effort also rolling out in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas. These four states are among those that lead the nation in the Guttmacher Institute’s analysis of abortion restrictions that conflict with science. In total, the abortion restrictions in place in these states affect nearly 8 million women of reproductive age. These state campaigns bring together reproductive rights partners at the local level to show how these restrictions are harming women. Additional partners include Texas Freedom Network Education Fund and Trust Women, an organization based in Kansas and Oklahoma.

“When politicians turn into laws as they have in Louisiana, trusted clinics are shut down and care is pushed out of reach,” said Sarah Lipton-Lubet, vice president at the National Partnership. “We’re excited to launch this multi-state effort with partners like Lift Louisiana to call out politicians in these states and gets lies out of abortion policy.”

Last year, the National Partnership released its own data showing more than 70 percent of abortion restrictions introduced in just the first two months of 2016 were based on lies. In 2016, the National Partnership ran state-based Lies to Laws campaigns in Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. For more information about how abortion opponents are turning lies into laws, visit LiesIntoLaws.org/In-the-States.

 

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The Guttmacher Institute is a leading research and policy organization committed to advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights in the United States and globally. More information is available at Guttmacher.org.

Lift Louisiana is a non-profit organization advocating for and defending reproductive health, rights and justice.

The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, reproductive health and rights, access to quality health care and policies that help women and men meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at NationalPartnership.org.

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