Provided by Jean Siebenaler, DWCF Legislative Chair

HB 5 (Grall) / SB 146 (Stargel) Fetal and Infant Mortality Reduction were filed this week and are expected to be scheduled for their first hearings next week in the House Professions & Public Health Subcommittee and Senate Health Policy Committee.  If enacted into law, the bill will prevent a physician from performing a termination of pregnancy if the physician determines the gestational age of a fetus is more than 15 weeks. There are also more stringent reporting requirements placed on medical abortions. After 15 weeks, there are no exceptions for rape or incest, though there are exceptions to save the life of the mother or if it can be proved the fetus has a fatal anomaly. It is clear women are not “free” to make their own private healthcare decisions in the free state of Florida!

We need you urgently to OPPOSE these bills by contacting the committee members in the lists at the end of this email. Remind them that you vote and ask them to stop these bills from being heard or to vote “NO” if the bill is scheduled in their committees.

Choose a few of the following talking points or create your own:

·        Denying women access to abortion results in high and unnecessary economic costs and serious consequences for children in Florida.

·        Household income of women who are denied an abortion are almost 4x more likely to fall below the federal poverty level; and these women are 3x more likely to be unemployed.

·        Children of women who were denied abortions were 3x more likely to live in households below the Federal poverty level and were less likely to achieve developmental milestones than the existing children of women who had abortions.

·        There is a huge cost to taxpayers involved in caring for unwanted children or children whose parents cannot afford to care properly for them. (Medical care, social services, etc.).

·        Abortion bans are unpopular with most Floridians, who respect the privacy of medical decision. A major of Floridians support access to abortion in all or most cases.

·        While some support abortion restrictions before viability, abortion after 21 weeks is rare – about 1% of all abortions – and only in extreme cases: severe fetal abnormality or threat to the mother’s survival.

·        Banning abortion won’t stop abortions. It will just stop safe abortion. Are we ready to return to the days of back-alley abortions? Of desperate women attempting self-abortions or abortions performed by unlicensed providers? Severe health consequences and deaths of young women are inevitable.

·        Abortion does not increase a woman’s risk of suicidal thoughts or the chance she will develop PTSD, depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, or lower life satisfaction.

·        95% of women said abortion was the right decision for them.

·        Women who could not terminate unwanted pregnancies were more likely to remain in contact with violent partners, putting themselves and their children at greater risk than if they had received the abortion.

·        Continuing an unwanted pregnancy and giving birth is associated with more serious health problems than abortion.

·        When women can control the timing of pregnancy, children benefit.

Contact the following members of the House Professions and Public Health Subcommittee for HB 5. 

Chair: Robinson , Jr., William Cloud “Will” [R] 717-5071
Vice Chair: Snyder, John [R] 717-5082
Andrade, Robert Alexander “Alex” [R] 717-5002
Arrington, Kristen Aston [D] 717-5043
Borrero, David [R] 717-5105
Eskamani, Anna V. [D] 717-5047
Fernandez-Barquin, Juan Alfonso [R] 717-5119
Garrison, Sam [R] 717-5018
Gottlieb, Michael “Mike” [D] 717-5098
Killebrew, Sam H. [R] 717-5041
Maggard, Randall Scott “Randy” [R] 717-5038
McClain, Stan [R] 717-5023
Rayner, Michele K. [D] 717-5070
Rizo, Alex [R] 717-5110
Rommel, Bob [R] 717-5106
Sirois, Tyler I. [R] 717-5051
Skidmore, Kelly [D] 717-5081
Smith, Carlos Guillermo [D]* 717-5049
Tuck, Kaylee [R] 717-5055

Contact the following members of the Senate Health Policy Committee for SB 146. 

Chair: Senator Manny Diaz, Jr. (R) 487-5036
Vice Chair: Senator Jason Brodeur (R) 487-5009
Senator Ben Albritton (R) 487-5026
Senator Dennis Baxley (R) 487-5012
Senator Aaron Bean (R) 487-5004
Senator Lauren Book (D) 487-5032
Senator Janet Cruz (D) 487-5018
Senator Ileana Garcia (R) 487-5037
Senator Shevrin D. “Shev” Jones (D) 487-5039
Senator Bobby Powell (D) 487-5030

Thank you