Wyoming Banned Abortion. She Opened an Abortion Clinic Anyway.

The only abortion clinic left in the state has been protested and set on fire, rebuilt and opened as Wyoming grapples with what it means to be conservative in a post-Roe nation.

By Kate Zernike, NYT
March 10, 2024

It was not such an implausible idea, back in 2020, when a philanthropist emailed Julie Burkhart to ask if she would consider opening an abortion clinic in Wyoming, one of the nation’s most conservative states and the one that had twice given Donald Trump his biggest margin of victory.

In fact, Ms. Burkhart had the same idea more than a decade earlier, after an anti-abortion extremist killed her boss and mentor, George Tiller, in Wichita, Kan., where he ran one of the nation’s few clinics that provided abortion late in pregnancy.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2024/03/10/us/wyoming-abortion-clinic-julie-burkhart.html

Supreme Courts in 3 states will hear cases about abortion access this week

DECEMBER 11, 2023
By Katherine Davis-Young (KJZZ), Alice Fordham (KUNM), Hanna Merzbach (KHOL/Wyoming Public Media)

The future of reproductive rights for a wide swath of the Mountain West may be decided next week, as three state Supreme Courts hear arguments in cases that will determine abortion access in the region. Here's what to know.

Which law is the law in Arizona?
When the U.S. Supreme Court returned abortion regulating power to states, Arizona had two seemingly conflicting abortion laws on the books. One, passed just a few months before Roe v. Wade was overturned in 2022, outlaws abortion after 15 weeks. The other, which dates back to 1864, is a near-total ban.

Continued: https://www.npr.org/2023/12/11/1218357869/state-supreme-courts-abortion-wyoming-new-mexico-arizona

‘It’s Not Just the Fringe Who Are Committing These Violent Acts’

By Sarah Jones, senior writer for Intelligencer
June 11, 2023

In April, abortion provider Julie Burkhart opened her newest clinic, Wellspring Health Access, in Casper, Wyoming. Wellspring is the only clinic to provide surgical abortions in the state, and its opening had been delayed for months because an anti-abortion activist allegedly set fire to it while it was under construction. As a former employee of Dr. George Tiller, who was assassinated in 2009, Burkhart has seen the anti-abortion movement at its most violent and remains determined to provide abortion care. Though the future for abortion rights in Wyoming looks uncertain, Wellspring is taking appointments and providing a full range of reproductive-health services to people in Casper and the surrounding area. While the clinic provides care, it also fights to keep abortion legal in Wyoming. Attorneys for Wellspring have joined a group of plaintiffs challenging two recent anti-abortion laws in Wyoming: One would ban medication abortion and is set to take effect in July, and the other is a near-total abortion ban, which is on hold as litigation proceeds.

I spoke with Burkhart about her work, the future of Wellspring, and the importance of providing abortion care in rural areas and Republican-led states like Wyoming. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Continued:  https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2023/06/people-of-all-walks-need-access-to-abortion-care.html

Abortion clinics regroup, rebuild after violent attacks: ‘There’s more work to be done’

Christine Fernando, USA TODAY
March 25, 2023

As a detective led her through the charred remains of the clinic, Julie Burkhart was heartbroken. Everything was black and melted. The smell was overwhelming. Fire and smoke damage had engulfed the building from the basement to the attic.

“I knew then that we were going to have a long road ahead,” said Burkhart, president of Wellspring Health Access in Casper, Wyoming.

Continued: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2023/03/25/abortion-clinics-violence-attacks-rebound-rebuilding/11484439002/

After clinic arson, abortion rights advocates in Wyoming step up their fight

Lawmakers want to ban abortion. Advocates are confident that Wyoming’s constitution protects access — and they’re fighting in court to prove it.

Jordan Smith
October 15 2022

THE SUN WAS just coming up on May 25 when Julie Burkhart’s phone rang.

Burkhart had arrived in Casper, Wyoming, a day earlier to check on renovations to a new abortion clinic she was opening on East Second Street. The final cleaning in preparation for opening day was scheduled for the end of the week. That evening she’d done a walk-through; all looked good. But when she heard the voice of one of her contractors on the other end of the line, she knew something was wrong. “I was thinking there’s a plumbing issue,” she recalled. “‘There was a water break, right?’”

Continued: https://theintercept.com/2022/10/15/wyoming-abortion-clinic-arson/

Wyoming authorities search for a suspect believed to have set an abortion clinic on fire

By Amanda Musa, CNN
June 11, 2022

(CNN)Local and federal authorities are searching for a suspect who they believe intentionally set fire to an abortion clinic set to open in Casper, Wyoming, later this month.

The suspected arson took place in the early morning hours of May 25, according to a news release from the Casper Police Department.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2022/06/11/us/casper-wyoming-abortion-clinic-arson/index.html