She was one of Alabama’s last abortion doctors. Then they came for everything she had

Dr Leah Torres has endured the ire of the anti-abortion movement without backing down – but now she faces her most daunting challenge

by Poppy Noor
Wed 22 Mar 2023

Dr Leah Torres doesn’t tell people what she does when she meets them, which makes it hard to make friends. She removes her name from every piece of trash before she puts it out for recycling, in case people walking past see her name and find out where she lives. If a package addressed to her arrives on her porch, she calls everyone she knows to identify who sent it before she opens it – it could be a bomb.

Once, coming back from work in the piercing August Alabama sun, she noticed a gray sedan parked in her driveway. Instinctively, she fled to a neighbor’s house – she barely knew him – but asked if he could walk her home anyway. The car turned out to be a stranger’s; the driver had just pulled over to send a text message. “Still, you never know,” says Torres, her big, almond-shaped eyes conveying concern.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/mar/22/alabama-last-abortion-doctor-leah-torres


USA – Abortion bans don’t prosecute pregnant people. That may be about to change.

Legislation in Oklahoma and remarks from the Alabama attorney general could foreshadow new efforts to punish people who induce their own abortions.

Shefali Luthra, Health Reporter
January 13, 2023

As state lawmakers weigh new restrictions on abortion, some Republicans are revisiting a longstanding taboo of not prosecuting pregnant people for seeking abortions in places where the procedure is banned, though the topic remains divisive among anti-abortion advocates.

State restrictions have so far fallen just shy of imposing criminal penalties on people who seek abortions, instead targeting physicians, health care providers and anyone else who might help someone get an abortion.

Continued: https://19thnews.org/2023/01/abortion-bans-pregnant-people-prosecution/


The anti-abortion movement just had a mask-off moment in Alabama

In Alabama, pregnant women are subjected to a work around law in the name of protecting the fetus: chemical endangerment of a child

Moira Donegan
Fri 13 Jan 2023

This week, Steve Marshall, Alabama’s Republican attorney general, said he sees a path to prosecuting women for having abortions in his state. This was a bit of a faux pas: a moment of letting slip the mask that the anti-abortion movement always tries to keep on.

Alabama’s abortion ban, which has only limited exemptions for women’s lives, makes providing an abortion a felony, punishable by up to 99 years in prison. But like nearly all of the abortion bans that have sprung into effect since the US supreme court’s ruling in Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health overturned Roe v Wade last June, the law has no mechanism to prosecute women who receive abortions. But that doesn’t mean that patients are safe from criminal charges, according to the state’s top prosecutor.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2023/jan/13/alabama-attorney-general-anti-abortion-movement


Alabama case over mistaken pregnancy highlights risks in a post-Roe world

By Hassan Kanu
December 6, 2022

(Reuters) - An ongoing lawsuit in Alabama typifies the far-reaching criminalization of women enabled by some anti-abortion ideology and the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ruling overturning Roe v. Wade.

A ruling in the matter, which involves a woman merely suspected of being pregnant, could be a bellwether for various cases relitigating women’s rights in the wake of the high court’s decision.

Continued: https://www.reuters.com/legal/government/alabama-case-over-mistaken-pregnancy-highlights-risks-post-roe-world-2022-12-01/


An Alabama Clinic Reinvents Itself for a Post-Roe World

BY ROBIN MARTY
PHOTOGRAPHS BY LUCY GARRETT FOR TIME
JULY 28, 2022

On the morning the Supreme Court announced that it had overturned Roe v. Wade, we had 21 patients in our lobby waiting to have an abortion. We cried as we were forced to turn them all away. They cried as they realized the very same medical procedure that was legal only a few minutes earlier was no longer available to them. But the reality was that each of those people represented a potential felony for my staff—and up to 99 years in prison. Within hours of the decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the injunction on a 2019 law was lifted and abortion became illegal in almost all instances in the state of Alabama.

Continued; https://time.com/6200914/alabama-clinic-after-roe-v-wade/


Planned Parenthood Has Quietly Stopped Providing Abortions in Georgia and Alabama

Independent clinics have been "deeply impacted" by the move in a region with already dwindling access to reproductive health care.

By Susan Rinkunas
Apr 28, 2022

Planned Parenthood quietly stopped scheduling abortions this month at its clinics in Georgia and Alabama and canceled some existing appointments, due to what it said were staffing issues at its Southeast affiliate. The organization said the change is temporary, but did not say when it would resume care. In the meantime, the clinics are referring people to other providers.

“We have elected to scale back some of our services across the affiliate while we onboard new staff at our health centers and at the executive level,” the spokesperson said in response to questions from Jezebel. “This is a temporary change, and we expect to again be operating at full capacity by the end of the month.” There are two days left in the month and it does not appear that abortions will resume in that time frame.

Continued: https://jezebel.com/planned-parenthood-has-quietly-stopped-providing-aborti-1848856363


As U.S. abortion access wanes, this doctor travels to fill a void

April 27, 2022
By Gabriella Borter

BIRMINGHAM, Ala., April 27 (Reuters) - Inside Planned Parenthood’s Birmingham, Alabama, clinic, a quiet space with few windows and stock photos of the city lining the walls, a woman tapped her hand against her stomach as Dr. Shelly Tien performed a surgical abortion.

Tien, 40, had flown to Birmingham the day before, and she would return home to Jacksonville, Florida, that night. A week earlier, she performed abortions at a clinic in Oklahoma. She's among an estimated 50 doctors who travel across state lines, according to the National Abortion Federation, to provide abortions in places with limited abortion access.

Continued: https://www.reuters.com/legal/government/us-abortion-access-wanes-this-doctor-travels-fill-void-2022-04-27/


Abortion Clinics Are Rapidly Closing. Many Won’t Come Back

BY ABIGAIL ABRAMS
DECEMBER 2, 2020

Dr. Yashica Robinson is an optimist—and that, she says, is fortuitous. As one of the last abortion providers in Alabama, a willingness to see the bright side is practically a job requirement.

For much of the past year, Robinson, who is the medical director at the Huntsville-based Alabama Women’s Center for Reproductive Alternatives, and her staff have fought to overcome the challenges posed by COVID-19, while simultaneously battling a state effort to suspend all abortion services during the pandemic. “We will continue to be innovative and be creative and find ways that we will make this work,” she says, with characteristic resolve.

Continued: https://time.com/5916746/abortion-clinics-covid-19/


Reproductive justice non-profit buys Alabama abortion clinic

Reproductive justice non-profit buys Alabama abortion clinic

Posted May 15
By Abbey Crain

The director of the Yellowhammer Fund, a non-profit that provides financial assistance for abortions in Alabama, said she was considering shutting down the organization amid financial worry before Alabama passed a law banning near all abortions in the state in May 2019 .

One year later, after an influx of more than $2 million in donations from across the country in the immediate aftermath of the ban and the support of 1,200 monthly financially sustaining members, the fund now owns and operates the West Alabama Women’s Center, one of three of remaining abortion clinics in the state.

Continued: https://www.al.com/news/2020/05/reproductive-justice-non-profit-buys-alabama-abortion-clinic.html


USA – Every State That’s Tried to Ban Abortion Over the Coronavirus

Every State That’s Tried to Ban Abortion Over the Coronavirus

By Hannah Gold
Apr. 7, 2020

Just days into the national surge of coronavirus cases, as an increasing amount of states called for nonessential businesses to shut down, some Republican legislators began using the public health crisis as an opportunity to deny health care to patients seeking abortions. The tactic has been replicated in the past couple of weeks, with governors in several states peddling the cynical argument that temporarily banning abortion will help shore up their supply of medical gear for hospitals overwhelmed by the pandemic.

So far, lawmakers in five states — Ohio, Texas, Alabama, Iowa, and Oklahoma — have attempted to halt abortion services indefinitely. As of now, only the Texas order has taken effect, and all of these temporary bans face strong legal challenges. Last week, providers in Alabama, Iowa, Ohio, and Oklahoma filed lawsuits to prevent the orders from taking effect in their states. A similar lawsuit was filed in Texas last week as well.

Continued: https://www.thecut.com/2020/04/every-state-thats-tried-to-ban-abortion-over-coronavirus.html