Stop Risking Women’s Lives With Pregnancy Complications

Target: Jim Justice, Governor of West Virginia

Goal: Save women’s lives with more flexible abortion rights for those experiencing pregnancy complications.

Recently, a pregnant woman had her water break in her second trimester. She saw a doctor in Pittsburgh who was able to induce labor and end the risky pregnancy. The only catch was the woman had to drive from her homes state, West Virginia, for the potentially lifesaving procedure. Her four hour journey while in excruciating pain was necessary because of West Virginia’s restrictive abortion laws.

West Virginia permits abortions only in a life threatening emergency. This scenario, however, did not apply because the doctors at her local hospital did not believe the pregnancy posed a risk at that particular time. It begs the question: How close to risk of death must someone be on account of pregnancy complications for it to be considered an emergency?

State doctors are faced with this tough question in their practice without receiving a clear answer from lawmakers. For many healthcare providers, this means choosing between fulfilling their obligation to treat sick people and, at the same time, not risk legal consequences from violating anti-abortion laws. When doctors feel the need to call lawyers before helping someone clearly in need, there is something wrong in the healthcare system. No one wins with restrictive abortion laws.

Sign the petition below to urge West Virginia’s Governor Justice to adjust the state’s abortion laws to protect women enduring dangerous pregnancy complications.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Governor Justice,

West Virginia’s restrictive abortion laws are posing a public health risk. One woman recently had to drive four hours out of state to terminate a pregnancy that may have costed her life if not addressed as urgently as it was. When healthcare providers’ hands are tied in making professional judgement calls they are trained to address, we take away the human right to a healthy life.

Doctors, not lawmakers, take on years of work to read patients symptoms and make objective decisions about what services to provide patients. They should be trusted to always do what is best for patients, even when dealing with those experiencing pregnancy complications. In fact, doctors often do not offer care when it is not necessary which enforces the urgency to allow them to make professional judgements in situations relating to risky pregnancies.

Terminating a pregnancy is a difficult decision whether the pregnancy is voluntary or not. However, if someone’s health is at risk due to risks from an unviable pregnancy, seeking healthcare is no longer a decision and becomes a necessity. Because doctors are required to provide necessary healthcare in the interest of a patient, this sometimes can include aborting a pregnancy.

We urge you to revise your anti-abortion laws to at least allow women to stop risking their lives from pregnancy complications.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Suiren2022


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230 Signatures

  • Maria Mason
  • cat MIGLIANO
  • MaryAnn Bomarito
  • James Brown
  • Judy Scheffel
  • Allison Burgess
  • Cécile BISSONNIER
  • Donna Pfeffer
  • Elizabeth Albright
  • Diane Racz
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