UPDATED: Friday April 20, 2012 --- 5:15 p.m.
By: Barclay Pollak
Act 217 went into effect today and it's getting a very different response depending on who you speak with. Some are cheering on the legislation while others are saying it's nothing more than a continuation of the war on women.
Act 217 places new restrictions on the use of medication or nonsurgical abortions. In most cases the drug RU-486 is used in these procedures. In a press release Planned Parenthood says, " The law as drafted is ambiguous and difficult to interpret." Because of that the organization says they're suspending their nonsurgical abortions.
Pro-choice advocates say today was a victory, not for women, but for Scott Walker and other republican lawmakers. Lisa Subeck with NARAL Pro-Choice Wisconsin says, " Governor Walker and the republicans in the legislature have succeeded in making it harder for women to access basic reproductive health care."
Pro-life advocates say they were shocked by Planned Parenthood' s decision to suspend nonsurgical abortions. But they were also pleased. Julaine Appling with Wisconsin Family Action says, " If anybody was looking for me to be upset by the days news, wrong person. I was thrilled. "
The new law also requires abortion providers to meet with patients one-on-one to make sure they're not being coerced. Subeck calls the measure, "Cruel," while Appling says this law is meant to protect women.
" A war on women are you kidding? This is all about protecting women, " says Appling. " The point of the legislation was to try to put a woman, for a brief period of time, in a position where she can be brutally honest. "
26% of the abortions performed in Wisconsin are done using medication. Some believe that with Planned Parenthood no longer offering medication as an option the overall number of abortions will drop.
Posted Friday, April 20, 2012 --- 11:25 a.m.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Planned Parenthood plans to end nonsurgical abortions at its Wisconsin clinics.
The organization's leaders say Planned Parenthood will continue to provide surgical abortions at its clinics in Madison, Milwaukee and the Appleton area.
Planned Parenthood CEO Teri Huyck says the agency is suspending medication-induced abortions beginning Friday because of a new state law that subjects doctors who perform abortions to criminal penalties. The new law mandates that women having nonsurgical abortions visit the same doctor three times and that doctors ensure the woman is having the procedure voluntarily and without coercion.
Huyck says the law sets unprecedented barriers for women seeking medication abortions.
Planned Parenthood says about 25 percent of women who terminated pregnancies use the pill-induced abortion which requires a woman to take two drugs within the first nine weeks of pregnancy.
Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.