Reducing Abortion through Sonograms

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Ultrasounds are the single easiest way to prevent abortion. An article from the New England Journal of Medicine which reports that “when ten pregnant women came to an abortion clinic and were shown ultrasound pictures of the fetus before the abortion, only one went through with the abortion. Nine left the clinic pregnant.” The same thing which makes ultrasound images so remarkable is the thing that makes abortion so dreadful. It’s fairly easy to defend abortion in the abstract, but when you see the tiny bodies up close and realize the violence abortion does to them, the conclusion is fairly obvious. Abortion is a grisly business.

Reducing Abortion through Education & Pregnancy Support

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Pennsylvania’s first-in-the-nation Pregnancy and Parenting Support Program has served over 211,036 women the last 17 years. Started in 1996 to offer women counseling and mentoring support as an alternative to abortion, the statewide Program has provided over 1 million support service visits to women throughout Pennsylvania.

Real Alternatives is the statewide administrator for the Program. Kevin Bagatta, President & CEO of Real Alternatives said, “It has been so gratifying over these years that so many women who were alone and facing a crisis pregnancy had another person to assist them and empower them to overcome obstacles and pressures so they could choose life for their preborn baby.” Real Alternatives uses 93 pregnancy support centers, Catholic Charities, and maternity homes, and their over 500 caring and compassionate trained counselors to provide free pregnancy support and parenting education services to women the our state.

Reducing Abortion through Parental Notification

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Parental consent is required for most medical procedures children receive. 38 states [PDF] require parental consent and/or notification for a minor’s abortion. No state allows those younger than 16 to consent to sex. 45 states forbid minors from getting tattoos. Over 30 states regulate minors’ freedom to use indoor tanning services. Parents generally have the right to decide where their kids live and go to school. While there is debate over lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18, few would advocate lowering it beyond that. Even after being issued a driver’s license, the majority of states still regulate minors’ unsupervised night driving and number of passengers.

Reducing Abortion through Counseling & Waiting Periods

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The pro-life movement has advanced legislation requiring women to receive counseling before an abortion and have a 24-hour waiting period for an abortion. These “informed consent” laws mandate that a woman be given information about alternatives to abortion, including programs that can help her if she chooses to have her child, to be informed about collecting child support from the father if she needs it, learn about their medical risks of abortion, and receive information about the unborn baby. Often, she is not required to view this information, but rather needs only to be offered the opportunity to do so at the clinic. A number of states have proposed these measures, and Planned Parenthood and other pro-choice groups have fought against them, sometimes successfully, every time.

Reducing Abortion through Regulations on Abortion Providers

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Abortions at two Kentucky abortion facilities decreased dramatically after Kentucky’s pro-life informed consent law took effect 11 months ago, the abortion facility’s administrator said Wednesday at a Kentucky state senate committee hearing.

There were 3,057 abortions performed last year, down from 3,828 the year before, at EMW Women’s Surgical Center abortion facility in Louisville, Executive Director Dona Wells said. About a third of the year’s total – 1,015 – occurred in the first quarter of 2001. Then the pro-life law took effect, and abortions declined to 714 in the second quarter, Ms. Wells told the Health and Welfare Committee.

Reducing Abortions through Programs that curb Poverty, Domestic Violence & Abuse

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Poverty and the hopelessness it can bring into people’s lives is a major factor in the abortion rate. In one study by the Guttmacher Institute, women on Medicaid had twice the abortion rate of other women, even in states that fund childbirth but not abortions.

Unmarried American women may have four times the abortion rate of those who are married. This factor can combine with poverty in a vicious circle – the disruptions in life caused by poverty can make stable relationships harder to maintain, and unmarried or divorced women lack the personal support system that can help keep them from poverty and a desperate resort to abortion.