Amy Hagstrom Miller, president and CEO of Whole Woman’s Health and Whole Woman’s Health Alliance, spoke to Chris Cuomo on Cuomo Prime Time about S.B. 8, the Texas law banning abortion at six weeks of pregnancy, before many women know they are pregnant. The new law, set to take effect September 1, includes an unprecedented provision that asks private individuals — including anti-abortion protestors with no connection to the patient — to file lawsuits seeking “enforcement” of the ban. The law creates monetary rewards for any member of the public who successfully sues an abortion provider or those who “aid and abet” someone getting an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy. The Center for Reproductive Rights and its partners filed a lawsuit on July 14 to block the extreme Texas law.
“The chilling effect is profound. We have staff at our clinics already who are hearing from patients who are in the clinic [who have] made an appointment—there for an ultrasound or for some counseling—and who are asking if abortion is still legal,” said Hagstrom Miller. “Staff are feeling surveilled; they’re feeling scared. These are people who are on the frontlines as essential workers, providing access to abortion care services for the last year and a half. And right when we start to come out of the pandemic, there’s this type of restriction that is put forward that is not in the interest of health and safety. It’s simply politics. It’s extreme. The vast majority of Texans do not support this type of regulation.”
Watch Amy Hagstrom Miller’s interview segment, Texas Law Deputizes Citizens to Enforce 6 Week Abortion Ban, on CNN.