ACLU Calls on South Dakotans to Join the Effort to Stop Extreme Abortion Ban

March 24, 2006
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE    
CONTACT: media@aclu.org     

PIERRE, SD - The American Civil Liberties Union of the Dakotas today joined a broad coalition to stop South Dakota’s extreme and dangerous ban on virtually all abortions.  The newly formed group, the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families, called upon South Dakotans today to sign a petition that would place a repeal of the abortion ban on the November ballot.

“In banning virtually all abortions, South Dakota politicians went too far and put women’s health and safety in jeopardy.” said Jennifer Ring, Executive Director of the ACLU of the Dakotas.  “This over-reaching ban does not reflect the values of South Dakotans who want families to be able to make personal decisions about health care without government intrusion.”

The ban, which was passed by the South Dakota legislature last month and signed by Governor Rounds on March 6th, is scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2006.  The ban applies to all abortions in South Dakota and may even prevent doctors from providing lifesaving abortions.  Doctors who fail to comply with this law are subject to five years in jail and fines of up to $10,000. 

“A top priority of our legislature should be to reduce unintended pregnancies by promoting education and ensuring access to birth control and other reproductive health services,” Ring said.  “We are hopeful that volunteers from across the state will help lead this effort to protect the women and families of South Dakota.  This dangerous measure cannot be allowed to stand.”

The South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families is an organization made up of concerned individuals and more than 10 groups, including the ACLU of the Dakotas.

For more information visit www.acludakotas.org

To see the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families release, visit www.sdhealthyfamilies.com/pr-3-24-06.html

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