South Dakota is one of three states with abortion-related measures on the ballot this November. Previously, we discussed Colorado’s constitutional amendment and its implications on women’s health.
South Dakota’s first ballot initiative to ban all abortions was introduced and narrowly defeated in 2006. It did not provide for any exceptions, including health of the mother, rape or incest.
This year’s ballot measure is Initiated Measure 11 (full text available here). Unlike the 2006 measure, proponents claim it provides limited exceptions for rape, incest, and threats to the life or the health of the woman. However, the language of measure is so vague that it would be impossible to guarantee that women who need abortions to save their health or their lives, or women who have survived rape and incest would be protected.
South Dakota is already one of the most hostile states to women’s health. Currently, there are no doctors living in South Dakota who are willing to provide elective abortions. Planned Parenthood flies in doctors from Minnesota to perform the procedure.
More information on the dangers of Initiative Measure 11 in South Dakota:
National Public radio did an in-depth story on the Measure.
The South Dakota Healthy Families Coalition is working to defeat the Measure.
The Center for Reproductive rights has a fact sheet about the dangers of South Dakota’s ballot measure to the rights of women.