Conservatives have pushed infant safe haven laws as an alternative to abortion. But few American women use them

By Isabelle Chapman and Daniel A. Medina
Tue August 9, 2022

As many American women reckon with the sudden loss of their constitutional right to abortion, conservatives have floated an alternative they say makes abortion less necessary: safe haven laws.

The laws, which allow mothers to anonymously abandon infants at hospitals and other designated sites shortly after giving birth, have been in place in all 50 states since 2008.

The Anti-Abortion Movement’s Post-Roe Agenda: Inconvenient, Illegal, Unthinkable

In the event that Roe v. Wade falls, anti-abortion advocates will almost certainly look to create broad regions of the U.S. where abortion is prohibited – and to limit its practice in places where it isn’t.

By Kaia Hubbard
April 8, 2022

Supporters of abortion access feared the worst when Texas lawmakers shocked the country with a law banning abortion beyond six weeks of pregnancy, standing in direct opposition to the precedent established in the landmark Roe v. Wade Supreme Court ruling. And the reduction in abortions in the first few months after SB 8 was palpable.

Since then, the situation in Texas has been heralded as a harbinger of what a post-Roe reality may bring nationwide. But more than six months after the law took effect that not only prohibits abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected but deputizes private citizens as its enforcer, studies have pointed to a much smaller reduction in abortions than expected among the state’s residents due to alternate routes of accessing the services. Texans are still getting abortions – by going out of state or by ordering pills online.


Abortion: The great divide

OCTOBER 10, 2021

EMW Women's Surgical Center in Louisville is on the frontlines of the abortion conflict – one of just two clinics in Kentucky that provides abortions. Three-thousand women come here for those services each year, and every one of them must run a gauntlet of protesters. "This is not healthcare; this is killing human beings," said one woman standing outside the entrance.

Dr. Ernest Marshall co-founded the clinic in 1980. He told correspondent Rita Braver that there's a simple reason he offers women abortions: "You can never be equal if you can't control your reproduction."


The Study That Debunks Most Anti-Abortion Arguments

For five years, a team of researchers asked women about their experience after having—or not having—an abortion. What do their answers tell us?

By Margaret Talbot
July 7, 2020

There is a kind of social experiment you might think of as a What if? study. It would start with people who are similar in certain basic demographic ways and who are standing at the same significant fork in the road. Researchers could not assign participants to take one path or another—that would be wildly unethical. But let’s say that some more or less arbitrary rule in the world did the assigning for them. In such circumstances, researchers could follow the resulting two groups of people over time, sliding-doors style, to see how their lives panned out differently. It would be like speculative fiction, only true, and with statistical significance.

A remarkable piece of research called the Turnaway Study, which began in 2007, is essentially that sort of experiment.


Some US women are taking reproductive matters into their own hands: They’re ordering abortion pills by mail

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.


USA – With Kavanaugh on Court, Abortion Rights Groups Sharpen Their Focus on the States

With Kavanaugh on Court, Abortion Rights Groups Sharpen Their Focus on the States

By Emily Cochrane
Oct. 19, 2018

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Abortion rights groups, bracing for an assault on federal legal protections under a Supreme Court moved to the right by Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh, are pouring millions into a state-level fight to preserve services — an echo of the localized strategy used successfully by their opponents for years.

The new initiatives, by groups like Planned Parenthood and Naral Pro-Choice America, have two primary goals: to challenge severely restrictive measures advanced by emboldened state legislatures, and to bolster clinics in places friendlier to abortion rights that may become a fallback if access elsewhere is restricted.


10 legal experts on the future of Roe v. Wade after Kennedy

10 legal experts on the future of Roe v. Wade after Kennedy
His decision to retire could lead to more “incremental” attacks against the landmark decision.
By Li Zhouli
Jul 2, 2018

Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement announcement has spurred a raft of questions about how key legal precedents could shift under the tenure of a likely more conservative replacement — and chief among these is the fate of Roe v. Wade.

The landmark 1973 case that guaranteed women’s legal right to an abortion has been on conservatives’ target list for some time, and although Kennedy was appointed by a Republican president, he frequently sided with the liberal wing of the court and acted as a swing vote on cases preserving abortion rights.


USA – Bulwark Against an Abortion Ban? Medical Advances

Bulwark Against an Abortion Ban? Medical Advances

By Pam Belluck and Jan Hoffman
July 1, 2018

As partisans on both sides of the abortion divide contemplate a Supreme Court with two Trump appointees, one thing is certain: America even without legal abortion would be very different from America before abortion was legal.

The moment Justice Anthony M. Kennedy announced his retirement, speculation swirled that Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 ruling that legalized abortion, would be overturned. Most legal experts say that day is years away, if it arrives at all. A more likely scenario, they predict, is that a rightward-shifting court would uphold efforts to restrict abortion, which would encourage some states to further limit access.


Other countries don’t have Roe v. Wade. Here’s how they handle abortion laws.

Other countries don’t have Roe v. Wade. Here’s how they handle abortion laws.

by Siobhán O'Grady
June 30, 2018

When Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy announced his retirement this week, one of the first questions that came to mind for abortion rights advocates was how a new makeup of the high court could affect American women.

President Trump has said since the beginning of his campaign that he is committed to appointing conservative justices to the court, who could overturn or cripple Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court decision that ruled that state laws restricting or criminalizing abortions violated a woman's right to privacy under the 14th Amendment and thus were unconstitutional.


Ireland – Attempts to misrepresent disabled in abortion debate, expert says

Attempts to misrepresent disabled in abortion debate, expert says
‘No evidence’ 12-week rule leads to abortions in cases of disability, seminar hears

Fri, Mar 9, 2018
Lorna Siggins

A North American expert on abortion law has paid tribute to the Government’s “democratic lawmaking” in opting to hold a referendum on the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution.

“People may change their mind in 20 years, but it is really wonderful that the issue is going to be decided by way of referendum in Ireland,” Prof Carol Sanger of Columbia University told a seminar hosted by the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway (NUIG) on Friday.