The 2016 Minnesota legislative session has drawn to a close. This session saw scores of bills to restrict access to abortion, along with an unprecedented attempt to defund Planned Parenthood and the tens of thousands of patients who access reproductive health services across the state each year.
The attacks on reproductive health this session included bills that could have:
- Restricted access to safe and legal abortion for rural women;
- Placed unnecessary restrictions on abortion providers in order to shut down clinics across the state;
- Eliminated abortion coverage for women who access health insurance from state sponsored programs; and
- Eliminated access to Planned Parenthood clinics for 45,000 patients each year who rely on Planned Parenthood for birth control, STD testing and treatment, clinical breast exams, and life-saving cancer screenings.
We are happy to report that none of these dangerous provisions passed!
We are grateful to our steadfast allies in the Minnesota House and Senate and the Governor's office - all who went to great lengths to prevent these measures from becoming law. But we know that our opponents will never give up. We're always one election from being a Wisconsin, Texas or Ohio. Since 2011, nearly 300 restrictions on access to safe and legal abortion have been passed into law in states all across the country.
The legislative session may be over, but the fight for women's reproductive health continues - the 2016 election is just 166 days away.
In order to ensure that Minnesota remains an oasis for reproductive health and freedom, we must now turn our focus to electing reproductive health champions to the Minnesota House and Senate. Let's create a Minnesota where we can not only stop our state from turning back the clock on women's health, but also move our state forward.