Wyoming attempts to ban abortion medications

Cameron Christopher, Staff Reporter

On March 17, 2023, Wyoming was the first state to ban medication abortions. Just 5 days later on March 22,  Judge Melissa Owens temporarily blocked this ban, making it illegal to enforce this new ban just yet.

This will cause a drastic change if it spreads nationwide in the future. Guttmacher Institute says that “medication abortions were more than 50% of all abortions in the United States.” The medication seems to be more popular because of the ease of it compared to a procedural abortion. Planned Parenthood says that “ medication abortions are drastically more safe than procedural abortions.”

In Wyoming, these mother’s seeking abortions are not being criminally prosecuted. Doctors who try to prescribe an abortion (with exceptions) will be punished with fines and a felony offense.

Prior to Wyoming banning medication abortions, other states have had limitations on abortions in their state. Throughout time the laws on abortions have been constantly changed. Roe v. Wade was initially passed in 1973 to allow women safe access to abortions. The recent overturning of Roe v. Wade allowed Wyoming to alter their state’s abortion laws again.

Wyoming is a predominantly conservative state. Which is what led Wyoming to place this ban after the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Even as a predominantly conservative population, Wyoming residents sued the ban. According to Associated Press, the reasoning behind the plaintiff’s case was “the ban violated a 2012 state constitutional amendment guaranteeing the right to make one’s own healthcare decisions.”.

Wyoming is the first state to drastically change their abortion laws after the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Wyoming isn’t the only state either, other states have been pushing to make their states abortion laws stricter than Wyoming’s.

The world needs to remember the significant number of women who died in the 70’s and 80’s due to complications of illegal abortions before Wyoming decides to either to leave the block in place or unblock it.