‘Devastating’: Planned Parenthood responds to Roe v. Wade being thrown out

MADISON, Wis. — One of Wisconsin’s few abortion providers called the news of the U.S. Supreme Court throwing out Roe v. Wade “devastating,” while saying it will go forward with plans to pause abortion services in the state until they get clarification on the state law.

“This ruling takes away the freedom to control our bodies and personal health care decisions, giving it to politicians to decide,” Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin President and CEO Tanya Atkinson said in a statement after the decision was announced.

The ruling means states revert back to any abortion laws they previously had on the books. In Wisconsin, that means a statute passed in 1849 that created criminal penalties for providing abortions with no exceptions made for cases of rape or incest.

RELATED: U.S. Supreme Court reverses Roe v. Wade, abortion now illegal in Wisconsin

Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul has previously said he will not prosecute abortion cases if Roe was overturned, and called on local law enforcement and district attorneys not to enforce the law.

Planned Parenthood says until it can get more clarity on if Wisconsin’s 173-year-old law is enforceable, it will pause abortion services. They had already stopped scheduling procedures beyond June 25 in anticipation of the Supreme Court ruling. The organization is one of the few non-hospital settings where people in Wisconsin could get abortion services. Hospitals can only perform an abortion if the mother’s life is in danger.

Last month, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin also said it planned to work with the organization’s Illinois chapter to arrange for abortion services in that state, where it is still legal up to the point of the fetus being considered viable.

“Although abortion services are not available in Wisconsin for now, Planned Parenthood’s doors across the state are open and we are here to help patients get the care they need. This includes helping patients access safe abortion care where it remains legal, offering travel assistance, and providing appropriate follow-up care when they return home,” Atkinson said in a statement. “Your health — and the health of the community — is our number one priority.”

Planned Parenthood is expected to hold a virtual news conference later today.

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