Top 7 questions about abortion access

With the recent signing of Georgia’s 6-week abortion ban officially signed and the latest news of Alabama also moving to ban abortion (if the courts allow), we’re hearing from a lot of clients and on social media that people are confused and unsure of their current right to receive abortion care. To help clear up some misconceptions (and reassure everyone of their legal right to have an abortion), we put together a list of answers to some of the most common questions we’ve recently received online, over the phone, and at our health care centers.

Is abortion still legal?

Yes, abortion is still legal in all 50 states of America and the District of Columbia. The misinformation out there can be extremely confusing and misleading, so it’s important that people understand they still have the legal right to have an abortion, no matter where they live in the US. Please help spread the word far and wide: Abortion is still legal in America!

Is abortion legal in Georgia and Alabama?

Again, the answer is yes, abortion is legal in Georgia and Alabama. While bans have been passed as early as six weeks of pregnancy at a state level in Georgia and Alabama, they will not go into effect for at least six months in Alabama or until early 2019  in Georgia, and we hope that legal intervention will prevent them from going into effect ever. While abortion access is threatened in the Southern region of the US, abortion is not illegal in any state — including Georgia, Alabama, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio. Right now, we need to remain focused on ensuring that all people know that abortion is still legal in every state to avoid people delaying abortion care later into their pregnancies due to fear or inaccurate information, so please help by sharing this info far and wide.

Is carafem open in Tennessee?

100% yes! Our doors remain open in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee and we’re committed to serving the community by providing abortion care up to 11 weeks with the abortion pill. We are also working to expand our scope of care to include in-office abortions.

BTW, our other locations in Atlanta, Chicago, and Washington, DC are also still open and currently offer both the abortion pill and the in-office procedure. In addition to abortion care, all four of our health centers continue to offer a selection of birth control options (such as Depo Provera shots, birth control pills, condoms, IUDs, implants, and emergency contraception) and sexually transmitted infection testing and treatment.

Am I breaking the law by getting an abortion?

No, you are not breaking the law when you receive an abortion. We’ve been hearing a lot of talk about the comparison of current events to the stories in The Handmaid’s Tale. Facing the possibility of a loss of freedoms, we understand there is a general air of uncertainty that seems to go beyond the routine anxiety of asking questions about abortion care. We’re here to help to relieve concerns and reassure you that abortion is legal and everyone has the right to get an abortion without fear of criminal prosecution.

Is my provider committing a crime for helping me get an abortion?

No, abortion providers are not breaking the law for providing abortion care. Some people have been asking if our staff will be at legal risk for arrest for making the appointment, which is not the case. We’re 100% committed to doing everything legally possible to continue to provide accurate information and abortion care to people in the communities we serve. (And thanks for asking, we appreciate that you care!)

Is it against the law to travel out-of-state to get an abortion?

No, you are not committing a crime by traveling out-of-state to receive abortion care. It is within your legal rights to travel to another state for an abortion. In fact, because politicians have been trying to make abortion impossible to get in some states, traveling to get an abortion has become frustratingly common.

While we’re on the subject, with many people traveling over 100 miles for abortion care and in some cases, spending 4-5 hours one way to reach a provider (like those traveling from Tennessee to Atlanta), we understand they have a limited amount of time. So we work to offer focused visits that last an hour or less, are offering the option to mail abortion pills to people who qualify and offer alternative options for follow up appointments that don’t always require a client to come back to the office.

When will the abortion bans go into effect?

Abortion laws vary from state to state, but please know that communities are coming together to fight to maintain an individual’s right to decide when and if to have children. We are hopeful that people joining together across the US will result in overturning unjust bans on abortion before they can be implemented. However, until the bans reach the higher courts and a new decision is made, Roe v. Wade stands and everyone has the right to obtain an abortion.  

Do you have any additional questions or want to schedule an appointment? Call us at 1-855-SAY-CARA or find your nearest location to schedule online.

Want to help us defend access to abortion? Make a donation, share this blog far and wide, and follow us on social media!