Abortion Law in Texas: Options Available to Texans

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Texas law currently prohibits abortions after six weeks — even in cases of rape, incest or severe fetal abnormalities — but under the trigger law passed in 2021, abortions would be banned from conception. Here’s what you need to know.

Legal risks of home abortions

If the trigger law takes effect in Texas, the state could see more people turn to self-directed abortions. Safe abortion drugs are available and requests for abortion pills have tripled since the latest state restrictions took effect in September, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in February.

However, a Texas law went into effect in December restrict the use of abortion-inducing drugs until the first seven weeks of pregnancy. Last month, a 26-year-old woman faces murder charges in Starr County for an induced abortion, although county officials later dismissed the case after receiving considerable national attention.

The law, SB4, also prohibits the mailing of drugs inducing abortion. Violating the law can be prosecuted as a felony in state prison, punishable by up to two years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Out of state travel

Texans would still have the option of traveling out of state for an abortion if the state’s trigger law is implemented. The number of people leaving Texas for abortion procedures has increased tenfold since September, according to a study released in March by the University of Texas at Austin. Many of those trips took place in Oklahoma, another state with a trigger law that would go into effect if Roe was overturned.

This map shows where abortions would still be protected if Roe v. Wade was canceled.

The leaked opinion is preliminary

At present, the Supreme Court has not overruled Roe v. Wade, so some abortions are currently legal in Texas. Despite the restricted options, many abortion support organizations in Texas are still available to help fund and coordinate abortions, such as the Texas Equal Access Fund, Frontera Fund, and Lilith Fund for Reproductive Equity.

“For most Texans, Roe has been virtually meaningless for 245 days and that means our clients have had to leave their homes to get basic medical care,” said Lilith Fund executive director Amanda Beatriz Williams. , in a press release. “If SCOTUS completely knocks Roe down, things will only get worse, especially for those struggling to make ends meet. We have only one option and that is to fight back.”

Emergency contraception

Emergency contraception such as Plan B is not considered an abortion in Texas. The drug is still legal and accessible.

ABORTION

The Roe vs. Wade Bomb



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