Following the lead of Kansas — the most anti-choice state in the nation — Pennsylvania lawmakers chose to make the very first vote of the session about an unnecessary, dangerous Senate abortion bill. As House members prepared to depart for their summer vacations at the end of June, a bill aimed at closing health centers was poised for a vote up until the very last minute. When they return in September (on September 27), you can bet they’ll be right at it again.
Two bills, in particular, threaten a woman's right to choose to have an abortion - one under the guise of patient safety and the other is a blatant attempt to chip away at a well-established legal right.
Senate Bill 732 (SB 732)
SB 732 is a TRAP (Targeted Regulations on Abortion Providers) law that would force free-standing abortion providers to be regulated as Ambulatory Surgical Facilities (ASF) which require burdensome and unnecessary structural and staffing changes.
- SB 732 could cause a public health crisis by making abortion care in Pennsylvania inaccessible;
- ASF regulations could cause the cost of an abortion to rise significantly and could force providers to close their door. There are 22 stand-alone clinics in Pennsylvania; all of these clinics currently do not meet the onerous regulations included in this legislation; and
- Women need safe, reputable providers to trust when seeking an abortion.
SB 3 would ban insurance companies participating in the yet-to-be established state health insurance exchange from offering abortion coverage.
- Currently, an estimated 80% of insurance plans provide abortion coverage. If SB3 passes, many women will lose the coverage they currently have; and
- Without coverage for abortion services, women will be forced to seek care from non-reputable providers.
(Note, due to security checks at the Capitol, you might want to arrive by 11 am to get through the metal detectors before the rally starts).
There are buses coming from Allentown, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Plymouth Meeting that you can sign up for at http://www.wevehadenoughpa.org/rally.html. You can also reserve lunch on this page. Information on bus departure and return times as well as locations is available at http://www.wevehadenoughpa.org/bus-departurereturn-information.html.
If you are interested in taking the van from the State College area, please contact Joanne Tosti-Vasey, President of Pennsylvania NOW directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 814-280-8571 to reserve a free seat.