Today, the NC General Assembly passed historic legislation in response to Roe v. Wade being overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court last year! The “Care for Women, Children, and Families Act,” is a much-anticipated pro-life bill designed to save at least 4,000 unborn precious babies each year from the atrocity of abortion, and likely thousands more. After months of negotiation, legislators agreed on a bill to move the 20-week abortion limit back to 12 weeks, and greatly restrict chemical abortions that are administered by taking two pills.
We believe that life begins at conception, and that every human being, born or unborn, has a God-given right to “LIFE, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” This bill is a step in the right direction, and we are grateful more babies will be protected by moving the limit from 20 weeks back to 12 weeks. We will continue to fight to save the lives of unborn babies in North Carolina, to advance pro-life laws, to help elect pro-life public officials, and to argue for life in court until we have a culture in North Carolina that values every life, born and unborn.
( NC Values team members Tami Fitzgerald [Executive Director], Courtney Geels [Grassroots Director], and Sebastian King [Director of Government Affairs], all gave legislative committee testimony in support of the bill. )
We are also thankful for a number of provisions that go a long way towards halting North Carolina’s status as the abortion destination of the South. There are provisions in the bill that protect the health and safety of women and prevent the brutal, painful practice of late-term abortion. The legislation also bans partial birth abortion; it requires abortion clinics to meet the same health standards of other ambulatory surgical facilities; it stipulates physicians attending surgical abortions must administer life-saving care for babies who survive botched abortions or pay a $250,000 fine; it prohibits eugenic abortions for race, sex and Down Syndrome; it requires any abortion after 12 weeks to be performed in a hospital; and it contains a number of other provisions focused on protecting and honoring human life.
Given that 59% of abortions in NC are chemical abortions, the bill’s provisions related to the dangerous practice alone provide significant protections for women and unborn babies. Specifically, the first of the two pills must be administered by a doctor in person and cannot be mailed, supplied, or dispensed by any other person (even a pharmacy) directly to the woman. Internet and other forms of advertising the abortion pills is forbidden. Violations carry a $5,000 fine per incident.
Significant improvements around informed consent given to women about the risks and complications associated with both surgical abortion and abortion pills are contained in the legislation. The doctor must give the abortion-seeking woman ALL the risks and complications of surgical and chemical abortion, with both the doctor and woman signing a designated form. Women will continue to have a 72-hour waiting period, with an additional 24-hours for surgical abortion pre-op. These changes should stop women from other states from coming to NC as a destination for abortion.
Appropriations were also included in the legislation to support mothers, with increased funding for pregnancy care, maternal care, child care, and for maternity and paternity leave for teachers and state employees. It adds $160 million in funding to protect and provide for pregnant women. In addition, improvements were included to speed up child permanency, safe surrender of infants, foster care, and adoption.
Seventy-six percent of abortion-determined women say they would choose life if their circumstances were different. We want pregnant women who find themselves worried about childcare, prenatal care, and their health and safety to see there are safety-nets around them, and abortion is not the answer. This bill helps equip them to do just that.
This bill has so much in it that it has been referred to as the “Momnibus”! In short, it will save thousands of lives. It is a good step in the right direction—toward making NC a destination for life instead of a destination for abortion.
The NC Values Coalition has been working for 1-1/2 years to get to this point, including filing an Amicus brief in the Dobbs case where abortion was overturned, drafting a 37 page bill that would create pro-life protections, conducting a statewide poll on abortion, working with legislators and lobbying to get as many protections for unborn babies and their mothers as possible. We will keep fighting and praying until every unborn baby in our state is protected from the barbarism that is abortion. We will continue to educate the public, elect pro-life legislators, and push even further for legislation that protects every unborn life.
Our work is greatly needed—perhaps more now than ever. Would you consider supporting our continued hard work by making a needed donation towards our continued work protecting the unborn?
Tami & Team,