Why America’s Abortion Rate Might Be Higher Than It Appears
Evidence suggests more American women are “self-managing” their abortions.
By Claire Cain Miller and Margot Sanger-Katz
Sept. 20, 2019
The number of abortions performed in American clinics was lower in 2017 than in any year since abortion became legal nationwide in 1973, new data showed this week. But that does not count a growing number of women who are managing their abortions themselves, without going to a medical office — often by buying pills illicitly.
These “invisible” abortions are hard to measure, so it’s unclear how much higher the true abortion rate is. But researchers say self-managed abortions have risen as abortion has become more restricted in certain states, and as more people have learned that effective pills can be ordered online or purchased across the border.
With Abortion Restrictions On The Rise, Some Women Induce Their Own
September 19, 2019
When Arlen found out she was pregnant this year, she was still finishing college and knew she didn't want a child.
There's a clinic near her home, but Arlen faced other obstacles to getting an abortion.
"I started researching about prices, and I was like, 'Well, I don't have $500,' " said Arlen, who is in her 20s and lives in El Paso, Texas. We're not using her full name to protect her privacy.
New York Woman Faces Up to Eight Years Behind Bars for Selling Abortion Pills Online
In February, FDA agents showed up at Ursula Wing’s door with an arrest warrant and seized her computer and phones, her daughter’s iPad, boxes of medication abortion pills, and a dozen packages that she was set to mail.
Aug 9, 2019
A New York City woman who sold medication abortion pills to more than 2,000 people over two years has been indicted on federal charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States and introducing misbranded drugs into interstate commerce. If convicted, she could face up to eight years in prison.
In 2012, the woman, Ursula Wing, posted on her blog the Macrobiotic Stoner about her experience terminating her pregnancy using pills that she had bought online. Four years later, she found herself running a business providing medication abortion pills to customers who needed them, including a teenager who was afraid to tell her parents that she was pregnant, and a woman who hid her abortion from her abusive partner.
Abortion Pills Should Be Everywhere
I bought them online. They’re easy to get, and they’ll change everything.
By Farhad Manjoo, Opinion Columnist
Aug. 3, 2019
One afternoon about a year ago, just as the Senate began considering Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court, I logged on to Day Night Healthcare, an online pharmacy based in India, and ordered a pack of abortion pills. A few hours later, I got a call from a Day Night customer-service agent with a warning. If my credit-card company called to ask about the purchase, “tell them you approve the charge, but don’t say what it’s for,” the man advised. “If they ask, say it’s gym equipment, or something like that.”
In fact, the bank never called, and in a week and a half, a small brown envelope — bearing a postmark not from India but from New Jersey — arrived in the mail.
Activist Rebecca Gomperts Is Reshaping Last-Ditch Abortion Care
by Greta Moran
Published on July 9, 2019
Abortions are as inevitable as the sun rising. Every year, around 56 million people around the world induce their own abortions, but this doesn’t need to come in the form of a “back-alley” abortion. Dutch activist and doctor Rebecca Gomperts has made it her life’s work to ensure the abortion pill is accessible—even in places where it is outlawed. She describes her work as a form of harm reduction: using medication to induce abortion is the safest alternative to fully legal abortion. So making this method available (and raising awareness of it) mitigates the consequences of harsh laws that criminalize or limit access to abortion. Gompert’s work reduces the potential of self-induced abortion causing harm or a person having to unwillingly carry a pregnancy to term.
Some US women are taking reproductive matters into their own hands: They're ordering abortion pills by mail
June 25, 2019
In Aid Access' first year of operation, 21,000 U.S. women reached out to the online organization launched in March 2018 that offers abortion pills internationally. Requests came from all over the country – especially states where abortion is tightly restricted.
After a string of states passed bans or limits in recent weeks, pushing the abortion debate in the USA to a fever pitch, abortion rights advocates said those numbers could climb.
European doctor defies FDA orders to stop sending US women abortion pills by mail
By Jessica Ravitz, CNN
Thu May 23, 2019
(CNN)A European doctor who provides abortion pills by mail to the United States is defying an order from the US Food and Drug Administration to stop.
"It is very important to continue ... because it is the only safe abortion alternative for some of the most vulnerable people," Dr. Rebecca Gomperts said in an emailed statement. "As a physician, I have the obligation to provide medical care to people in need."
Online abortion pill provider ordered to cease delivery by FDA
By Jessica Ravitz, CNN
Fri March 15, 2019
(CNN)A European organization that provides doctor-prescribed abortion pills by mail is under order by the US Food and Drug Administration to stop deliveries.
The federal agency sent a warning letter to Aid Access this month requesting that it "immediately cease causing the introduction of these violative drugs into U.S. Commerce."
"The sale of misbranded and unapproved new drugs poses an inherent risk to consumers who purchase those products," the letter says. "Drugs that have circumvented regulatory safeguards may be contaminated; counterfeit, contain varying amounts of active ingredients, or contain different ingredients altogether."
She Started Selling Abortion Pills Online. Then the Feds Showed Up.
What happened when one woman tried to make safe and cheap abortion pills available through the mail.
Mother Jones - March/April 2019 Issue
For two years, before she headed off to her full-time job as a web developer, or after she put her daughter to bed at night, Ursula Wing ran a business selling abortion pills from the bedroom of her New York City apartment. The 40-year-old single mother would fill orders that had been submitted through her website, dropping a piece of inexpensive jewelry into a mailer with a return address for “Fatima’s Bead Basket.” Hidden behind a panel taped inside were one tablet of mifepristone and four tablets of misoprostol.
Women in tech are mobilizing to improve access to abortion providers
In the face of a U.S. administration increasingly hostile to a woman’s right to choose, a number of organizations are finding new and clever ways to deliver access.
By Rina Raphael
Nov 1, 2018
In 2016, the National Network of Abortion Funds (NNAF), a network of 70 organizations supporting access to abortion, was putting together its annual fundraising Bowl-a-Thon, a coordinated nationwide series of games that featured a night full of drinks, gutter balls, and striped shirts—all in the name of reproductive rights. Women across the country gathered together to play and pick pun-heavy team names like Kiss Our Uter-Ass, Bowl V. Wade, and The Fempire Strikes Back.
But in the weeks leading up the fundraising event, the Bowl-a-Thon suffered a devastating setback: It was hacked. Not by bored teenagers, North Korean hackers, or the Russians—but by pro-life activists.