NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri
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Planned Parenthood files federal lawsuit challenging Missouri's abortion restrictions

"It’s always scary to have your constitutionally protected rights decided in a court of law,” said Alison Dreith, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri. "But I’m excited and optimistic. A woman's reproductive health care shouldn’t depend on her ZIP code."

Calling the requirements "an undue burden," Dreith said it's unreasonable for a state to have only one abortion provider for millions of Missouri women scattered across the state.

Coupled with a law in Missouri that requires women to wait 72 hours before an abortion, it forces them to take on added travel costs, Dreith said.

"They have to take time off work, find child care, lose out on that pay and often have to travel miles and miles to get there," she said.

 
Abortion opponents to push for new Missouri regulations
 
But Alison Dreith, executive director of abortion rights advocacy group NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri, said Missouri already is one of the most restrictive states in terms of abortion access, and "there’s not really more damage they could do.”

Dreith countered that the reporting proposal, which would increase requirements for abortion clinics, is one of the most concerning to her.

"It might close our last remaining clinic,” Dreith said. "To see increased hoops that providers have to go through that have nothing to do with women’s health is really frightening.”

 
Missouri Lawmaker Looks to Repeal Anti-Choice Laws in 2017
 

Alison Dreith, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri, told Rewire via email that the Supreme Court’s decision reaffirmed the constitutional right to access legal abortion and has "empowered women to fight back” against anti-choice laws in Missouri.

"NARAL is proud to work alongside Sen. Schupp and our allies to overturn these dangerous laws that do nothing to protect women,” Dreith said.

Voters face weighty decision over cigarette tax proposals

 By Renee Hickman

Alison Dreith, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri, said her group opposes the amendment because of its language restricting the use of funds from the tax for abortion services.

Dreith said that adding this language to the Missouri Constitution could open the door to challenges to abortion access in the future.

"We would have supported this measure three years ago when it was first being drafted," Dreith said. "It’s gone through several changes since then, and it’s really a shame that folks think that because it failed in the past, that it would stand to do better with adding language about abortion and stem cell research to pander to more conservative voters."

Protests Lead to Cancellation of Women's Event Featuring Ann Wagner
 
But Alison Dreith, the executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri, thinks she knows why. Dreith and a few other members of her organization planned to protest outside the event, taking Wagner, a Republican, to task for her anti-abortion policies.

"I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to hold Ann Wagner accountable,” Dreith says.

Then she got a call from a representative of the Women’s Policy Network. The woman on the phone asked her to call off NARAL’s protest because, she said, the event would have to be cancelled otherwise.

Dreith tried to explain that she had a right to protest, but the network representative, whose full name she doesn’t know, wasn’t having it.

"She said, ‘You should be happy because you’re about to get a president and a bunch of Supreme Court justices’,” Dreith says. "I said, ‘That’s really insulting.’”  
What It's Like to Be a Pro-Choice Activist in an Anti-Abortion State

By Rebecca Grant

In 2012, an anti-abortion protestor hit Alison Dreith on the head with a sign displaying a giant fetus.

Todd Akin, the Republican Senate nominee from Missouri, had recently floated his theory on TV that "legitimate rape” never leads to pregnancy, which would mean no one needed any exceptions included in abortion bans. Tensions were running high in the state and Dreith’s work at Planned Parenthood meant she was on the front lines. Protesters hurled harassment at her every day, but this was the first time one had physically assaulted her. Dreith’s opponents literally hit her over the head with their argument.

Why national pro-choice groups are giving up in the very states that need them the most

In Missouri, there’s a ban on insurance coverage of most abortions, requiring those who want such coverage to pay an additional fee for a rider. There’s also a mandatory 72-hour waiting period and a parental consent requirement for minors, among other restrictions. Since the 1970s, Jefferson City has been a testing ground for anti-choice legislation. Missouri passed forerunners to Texas’ HB2 back in 2007 and 2010; the anti-abortion legal organization Americans United for Life includes similar bills among the model legislation it shops around the country. The state now has one clinic, down from four in 2010.

 
The states that siphon welfare money to stop abortion
 
Missouri gives CPCs one of the largest sums, doling out $4.3 million for the most recent fiscal year to alternatives to abortion services, most or all of which goes to CPCs.

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21st Century Women’s Health

Repro Rights meet Economic Justice
It's time to pass Reproductive Non-Discrimination Act and Family Medical Leave Act, in order to ensure that the women and families of Missouri have access to the services they need, want, and deserve.

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