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Shapiro Says PA Abortion Rights Have Not Changed Despite Texas Ruling; Launches Website With Resources

Coming on the heels of a decision from a Texas federal judge, Gov. Josh Shapiro has launched a new website – pa.gov/freedomtochoose – for reproductive health care resources in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

The website’s goal is to provide facts and information in the wake of the ruling to restrict access to medication abortions nationwide.

“Your rights and freedoms here in Pennsylvania have not changed — you can get a safe, legal medication abortion using mifepristone in our Commonwealth,” said Shapiro. “As your Governor, I believe decisions on reproductive care are to be made between women and their doctors, not extremist politicians or radical court rulings. Let’s be clear: this Texas judge’s attempt to restrict access to medication abortions is just another attack on a woman’s right to choose. This is about protecting our freedoms, and I won’t back down from that fight.

“This new website will help those seeking critical reproductive healthcare services, no matter what part of the Commonwealth they live in or whether they are traveling from a state that has restricted abortion access. My administration is exploring every possible action we can take to keep medication abortion accessible, expand access to reproductive care, and continue safeguarding the freedom to choose — including defending abortion access as a party to Friday’s federal court ruling in Washington state under the leadership of Attorney General Michelle Henry.”

The new website aims to clear up any misinformation by providing a map to be able to locate providers, a checklist for making a plan, and ways to pay for the procedure.

Last Friday, U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, a federal judge of the Northern District of Texas, reversed the Federal Drug Administration’s decades-long approval of abortion pill regimen of mifepristone followed by misoprostol. Medication abortions often use a two-step regime of mifepristone and misoprostol at abortion clinics, pharmacies, or through the mail.

In a dueling opinion late Friday, a federal judge in Washington state also ruled in a different case – which Pennsylvania is a party to – that mifepristone is safe and effective, and ordered the FDA to preserve “the status quo” and retain access to the drug in the 17 states and Washington D.C. that are behind the second lawsuit.

The Justice Department on Monday appealed the ruling to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that would halt approval of the most commonly used method of abortion in the U.S., calling the decision “extraordinary and unprecedented.”

“If allowed to take effect, the court’s order would thwart FDA’s scientific judgment and severely harm women, particularly those for whom mifepristone is a medical or practical necessity,” the Justice Department wrote.





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