With the passage of Ohio’s new state budget, women in that state have lost access to low-cost family planning services, access to public hospitals during a health emergency and their right to privacy.
On Sunday night, Ohio Gov. John Kasich signed House Bill 59, the new $62 billion state budget that includes a $2.7 billion tax cut and increases the sales tax rate from 5.5 percent to 5.75 percent, wlwt.com reported.
The budget also included several controversial anti-abortion measures, including one that will force any woman seeking an abortion to undergo a trans-abdominal ultrasound.
Another measure of the budget puts Planned Parenthood last on the list of family-planning dollars, which essentially cuts off $1.4 million in federal funding, The Columbus Dispatch reported. Per wlwt.com, “Opponents of the new abortion restriction said that three clinics in Ohio would likely close now that the measure is implemented.”
Rape crisis clinics are also in jeopardy, thanks to passage of the new budget. If these clinics are caught counseling sexual assault victims about abortion, they could lose their public funding, Reuters reported.
Michigan Republicans are going for broke this week, as the lame-duck session winds down in the state legislature. No sooner had state lawmakers successfully pushed through a new right-to-work bill when they advanced a grab bag of anti-abortion measures that has been called the “greatest assault on reproductive rights” in the state’s history.
On Wednesday, the state Senate approved what has been called an “abortion mega-bill.” HR 5711 includes measures requiring anyone providing more than 120 abortions per year to do so in facilities that meet the same standards as “ambulatory surgical centers”—a provision often referred to as “targeted regulation of abortion providers” (or TRAP), because they single out abortion providers for standards far stricter than other medical facilities. The building codes alone could shut down many abortion providers in the state.
Other provisions of the bill would require a doctor to be physically present to dispense the drugs used for a medication abortion, which would make it illegal to provide telemedicine abortions. It also implements new rules for the disposal of fetal remains that would require them to be treated like the body of a dead person, rather than treating them like other forms of medical waste.