South Dakota Abortions Totals Decline in 2005, Continuing Trend

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 8, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

South Dakota Abortions Totals Decline in 2005, Continuing Trend Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 8
, 2006

Pierre, SD ( — Continuing a trend there and in other states, the number of abortions in South Dakota declined in 2005. The state saw 805 abortions last year, down from a total of 814 the year before. The figures come before an extensive debate on an abortion ban during this November’s elections that likely persuaded more women to opt against an abortion.

This is the fourth year in a row that abortion totals have declined.

The number of abortions on South Dakota residents went down by 12 as 658 women from the state had abortions in 2005, according to the state health department.

While 82 percent of the abortions done in South Dakota were on state residents, 11 percent were done on residents of Minnesota, 5 percent on Iowa women, and a small number on women from other states.

That means the state’s lone abortion business, a Planned Parenthood abortion center located in Sioux Falls, is drawing some women from across the border with neighboring states.

Leslee Unruh, the director of the Alpha Pregnancy center who led the fight for the state’s abortion ban during the elections, told AP she’s upset that abortion is still regarded as a means of birth control by some people.

Unruh pointed to figures showing the most common answer women gave for having an abortion was ”they did not desire to have the child.” Not having the ability to afford caring for a newborn was the second most common response for why the mother sought an abortion.

In 2005, just nine women sought abortions because they were victimized by rape or incest, down from 23 in 2004.

The state health figures found that women paid, on average, $400 to $449 for an abortion.

Abortion figures in the state reached their lowest point in 1998 when 674 abortions were done and they were at their highest point in the early 1980s when nearly 1,700 were done annually.