PIERRE, SD - The governor of South Dakota signed into law today a bill that requires any woman seeking an abortion to first visit anti-abortion “crisis pregnancy centers” (CPCs) and report the name of the physician providing the abortion to CPC staff. The law also requires a woman to wait 72 hours between meeting with her physician in person and obtaining the abortion. This is the longest mandated abortion waiting period in the country. CPCs are unregulated facilities that are primarily run by private groups that seek to discourage women from having abortions, often by promoting false information. CPCs are also not required to follow standard medical privacy procedures that ensure a patient’s medical information is kept confidential. The American Civil Liberties Union, ACLU of South Dakota and Planned Parenthood Federation of America will file a legal challenge to the law.
The following can be attributed to Robert Doody, ACLU of South Dakota Chapter Director:
“The last thing women in South Dakota need is more difficulty in obtaining health services. This shameful law not only interferes with a woman’s private medical decision, but also presents a danger to those who provide abortion care to women. Women need reliable medical care and advice, not government mandates that push a political agenda.”
The following can be attributed to Brigitte Amiri, senior staff attorney with the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project:
“This is one of the most egregious examples in a disturbing nationwide trend of assaulting women’s health. This law has nothing to do with a patient’s well-being but everything to do with endangering and humiliating women who seek abortion care. Women should not be punished for seeking a legal medical procedure.”