Texas Six Week Law

Texas Six Week Law

Arika Hamilton, Reporter

The Texas six week abortion law that passed on September 1st allows any citizen to sue anyone who caters to an abortion after 6 weeks of pregnancy. People who can be sued include people who provided transportation to the clinic, if they helped pay for it, and the people providing the abortion. The law makes no exception to rape, incest, age, women at risk of self-harm or suicide, or non-life threating health issues.

At six weeks most women don’t even know that they’re pregnant and are just now worrying about missing their period. According to Dr. Danial Grossman, who was quoted by Yasmine Sakay and Julia Ries “…means that patients only have about 2 weeks from their missed period to recognize and confirm the pregnancy, decide they want an abortion, find a clinic, arrange time off from work or school and childcare, if needed, as well as organize transportation since many people live far from the nearest clinic in Texas.” Texas Law Bans Abortion at Six Weeks: What This Means 

If someone is successful in suing anyone who aided an abortion, they receive a minimum of $10,000. According to coalitions of abortion providers and reproductive rights groups, quoted by Sarah McCammon the law, “places a bounty on people who provide or aid abortions, inviting random strangers to sue them.” Texas Abortion Ban: What It Means and What Happens Next. There is a website set up for citizens to send anonymous tips about anyone aiding in an abortion, though it is down for now they are working on setting a new one up. 

The law also states that the person getting the abortion needs to go into the clinic 24 hours beforehand for an ultrasound and state mandated counseling. This law is only going to cause more women to go back to unsafe abortions. The only exceptions are if the pregnancy is life threatening or the fetus has severe fetal abnormality, a condition likely to lead to the fetus death in utero or or within 28 days after birth.

When you miss your period you are considered already 4 weeks pregnant, even if conception didn’t occur 4 weeks ago. It is also very likely other conservative states will adopt this law. All though abortion advocates are preparing to challenge this law, abortion providers agreed to follow it while it’s in effect.