Legislative Victory! 72 hour abortion wait period passes General Assembly

This week, the North Carolina General Assembly passed the Women and Children’s Protection Act of 2015, which extends the abortion wait period in North Carolina from 24 to 72 hours. The legislation now moves to the office of Governor Pat McCrory, who has announced his intention to sign the bill into law. North Carolina mothers considering an abortion will now have a 72 hour consideration period after receiving information about the procedure from a physician, either in person or by phone. North Carolina joins four other states that have already signed a 72 hour abortion wait period into law: Missouri, South Dakota, Utah, and, most recently, Oklahoma. The 72 hour wait period will give mothers an opportunity to reflect on the life-altering decision they are considering after receiving informed consent information. As bill co-sponsor, Representative Jacqueline Schaffer, said, "The poorest decisions that we make are the ones we make under pressure and on impulse. We want women to be equipped with the right information as they are going to make that decision." Maria Gallagher recently highlighted what a “devastatingly permanent” action an abortion is in her article, “With Abortion, There Are No Do-Overs.” With the life of an unborn child on the line, a few days’ reflection is a prudent requirement that we hope will give mothers a chance to see the other, life-affirming options available to them. It must be pointed out that this legislative victory was only possible because of the ordinary North Carolinians who are willing to stand for life in the legislative and political realms. Grassroots support, such as your calls, letters, and visits to legislators, and attendance at our Pro-Life Lobby Days are essential for letting our representatives know that North Carolinians care about protecting life. As we like to say regarding pro-life political involvement, elections have consequences. The result of pro-lifers showing up at the polls, supporting pro-life candidates, establishing and maintaining relationships with pro-life office holders is protection for unborn children and their mothers. Along those lines, be sure to check if your state Senator and House Representative supported the 72 hour wait period bill (H465) and thank them for doing so! See how your Senator voted here and how your Representative voted here. Keep up the good work, pro-lifers! Your efforts are making a difference for mothers and babies in our state. Other helpful resources:

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