Louisiana’s Amendment 1 could end access to abortion in the state
“Do you support an amendment declaring that, to protect human life, a right to abortion and the funding of abortion shall not be found in the Louisiana Constitution? (Adds Article I, Section 20.1)”Amendment 1 Ballot Language
On November 3rd, Louisianans will vote on Amendment 1 and decide if the right to an abortion is protected in the state. This means that if the Supreme Court overturns or weakens Roe v. Wade, Louisiana politicians could ban abortion completely, even in cases of rape or incest. It is clear that Amendment 1 would have devastating impacts on the health and safety of pregnant people and their families across Louisiana.
Extreme and dangerous restrictions
Above all, Amendment 1 is an extreme and dangerous attack on the right to choose in Louisiana. The state already has excessive restrictions on abortion access. Currently, there are only three clinics in Louisiana that provide abortions.
Moreover, there are many restrictions in place that make the procedure expensive and difficult to access. For example, the state requires people seeking an abortion to complete mandatory counseling, follow strict time restrictions and other unnecessary requirements.
Amendment 1, should Roe v. Wade be overturned, would end safe and legal abortions in Louisiana. Therefore, this would force pregnant people to leave Louisiana to access necessary healthcare. Which is an expense most people cannot afford. As a result, Louisiana would see an increase in dangerous attempts to self-end pregnancies, which would increase maternal mortality and incarceration rates.
Furthermore, maternal mortality is already high in Louisiana. In 2019, Louisiana ranked the least-healthy state in terms of maternal mortality, with 72 deaths per 100,000 live births. Tragically, Black Louisianans have significantly higher rates of childbirth-related deaths than White residents. With over 112 deaths per 100,000 live births, in comparison to 47 per 100,000. Racial disparities in maternal mortality would surely increase, if abortion is outlawed in Louisiana.
Amendment 1 would hurt Louisiana’s families
From an economic point of view, women make up over 50% of the job force in Louisiana. 56% of college-educated women would not apply for a job in a state that had recently banned abortion. Should women leave the state or avoid the state when it comes to employment, Louisiana would see a decline in professionals working in the state.
Additionally, pregnant people who cannot access abortion when needed are three times more likely to be unemployed. They are also four times more likely to have a household income below the federal poverty level. Therefore, the percentage of Louisianans living in poverty would increase, should abortion access be blocked.
A surge in families living in poverty would result in an increase in reproductive injustice across the board. An increase in poverty would decrease all of the measures with which we evaluate the quality of life. The future of the state is dependent on the health and wellbeing of children and families. Therefore, it is crucial to protect every person’s right to access the critical healthcare they require to keep themselves and their families safe and healthy.
- Most importantly, if you live in Louisiana, it is critical that you vote. Early voting is open from October 16th to October 27th (excluding Sundays). The polls are open from 8:00 AM – 7:00 PM. Visit geauxvote.com to find more information about where and how to vote.
- Additionally, you can support Louisiana for Personal Freedoms, the group organizing the opposition to Amendment 1. Donate, sign up for emails, and follow them on social media.
- Finally, you can directly support pregnant people seeking abortion services in Louisiana by donating to the New Orleans Abortion Fund.
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