Contact: Latoya Veal, 202-628-8669, ext. 116
on Anniversary of Dr. Tiller's Murder
Statement of NOW President Terry O'Neill
Three years to the day since the murder of abortion provider and women's health activist Dr. George Tiller, irrational anti-abortion attacks continue. Today it is extremists in Congress seizing on sex-selection abortions overseas to bash U.S. women and their doctors.
The U.S. House of Representatives voted this afternoon on the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act or PRENDA (H.R. 3541), an anti-choice bill sponsored by Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) that would criminalize sex-selection abortions and require health care professionals, including mental health professionals, to report any such abortion to the "appropriate law enforcement authorities."
Although the bill failed, the National Organization for Women is appalled that lawmakers in the House would sponsor such a deceptive bill in yet another attempt to block women's access to necessary health care. While the bill purports to support gender equality and civil rights, PRENDA does nothing to address sex discrimination, and instead simply demonizes women seeking abortions.
This is a continuation of the right wing's War on Women. A majority of the legislators who backed PRENDA also have voted against contraception and to defund family planning clinics. They have voted in support of the House version of the Violence Against Women Act that would eliminate protections for women from underserved communities. And they are backing a GOP budget that would cut safety net programs critical to women and their families.
NOW urges women's rights supporters across the country to take note of those lawmakers (Republican AND Democrat) who attempted today to roll back women's basic rights. We must make clear that we will not let them get away with attacking our right to fundamental health care.