WASHINGTON, DC (October 31, 2017) This week, the House of Representatives’ Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing to discuss a bill that would require mandatory ultrasounds for women seeking abortions and would prevent women from obtaining abortions as early as six weeks. Under the “Heartbeat Protection Act of 2017,” health care providers who perform an abortion at as early as 6 weeks of pregnancy could be charged and convicted of a federal crime with a fine of up to five years in prison, or both.
“This latest abortion bill from Congress is clearly a ploy to attack women’s reproductive health, particularly Black women and low-income women of color.” said Linda Goler Blount, president and CEO of the Black Women’s Health Imperative. “It targets women who are especially vulnerable due to their lack of access to safe, legal abortions and the full range of reproductive options. This bill prohibits a woman from getting an abortion at as early as six weeks – a time when most women do not even know they are pregnant. Therefore, this bill is blatantly a part of a larger agenda to completely strip women of their constitutional right to an abortion. Black women deserve to have autonomy and control over any decisions related to their body. This bill takes away that right and a woman’s right to decide the right paths to take for her medical care . Simply stated, this bill would jeopardize women’s ability to truly maintain and protect their reproductive health. This kind of attack based on partisan goals and beliefs is unacceptable. We strongly urge the House Judiciary Committee to take into consideration the devastating impact this bill would have on not just low-income women and women of color but all women.”