Virginia Update

[Post Updated Below]

If you recall, a couple weeks ago I posted about the state of Virginia attempting Kansas-style regulatory shut downs of abortion-providing clinics. Today was the public meeting regarding the regulations and, thus, the chance to speak about them. So many people came that the board extended the public comment period from the 20 allotted minutes to more than an hour. Here are some highlights:
Supporters of the proposed regulations spoke in broad anti-abortion terms, citing out-of-state medical malpractice and the immorality of the practice. The first speaker, Frances Bouton, likened legal abortion to slavery. Del. Bob Marshall's wife, Cathy, spoke on his behalf, citing "ground-up babies" being flushed into the public water system. [ed: Say what now? Are you serious?! --Misty]

Those opposing the draft regulations included several doctors who noted that first-trimester abortion is one of the most common procedures in the United States and one of the safest.

Internist Wendy Klein, MD, noted that colonoscopies, also performed in doctor's offices, carry a 100 times greater risk than first-trimester abortions. Other speakers in opposition represented young college graduates, low-income women and African-American women, all unable to afford health insurance and basic medical care. The common plea to the Board -- with a couple of younger speakers noting its composition as primarily male and white -- was to consider medical and safety issues rather than their religious beliefs in their vote.
The vote is this afternoon, though I do not know at what time. According to the VA Dept of Health site, a resident can send public comment in these ways:
Members of the public wishing to submit written comments concerning the draft emergency regulations to the Board prior to the September 15 meeting may submit them via email to; via U.S. mail to Post Office Box 2448, Richmond, Virginia 23218; or by fax to (804) 864-7022.
Since it is still Sept 15th and they haven't yet voted--as far as I know--it couldn't hurt to have your voice heard via email or fax.

[UPDATE] According to NARAL VA:
Breaking bad news: #VA TRAP regulations OK'd by BoH, will now go to Gov. McDonnell.
Virginians can sign a petition being sent to McDonnell here.

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