South Dakota Appeals Ruling Denying Women Abortion-Suicide Link Information

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 18, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

South Dakota Appeals Ruling Denying Women Abortion-Suicide Link Information

by Steven Ertelt Editor
September 18
, 2009

Pierre, SD ( — The state of South Dakota and pregnancy centers are appealing a judge’s ruling preventing women from getting information before an abortion showing its link to suicide. A judge ruled in August that a new state law telling women that abortion kills their children is okay but struck down the suicide provision.

Judge Karen Schreier also struck down a portion of the new law requiring abortion centers to tell women that they have a legal relationship with their unborn child.

About the suicide provision, Judge Schreier called it “untruthful and misleading" — claiming that "such a risk is not ‘known,’" and, therefore, the "the suicide disclosure language of the statute is untruthful and misleading."

Attorney General Marty Jackley says the state is appealing her decision.

"We have sorted out two main legal issues that again we feel warrant further review by the higher court," Jackley told KSFY.

Two South Dakota pregnancy centers are also joining in the appeal — the Alpha Center in Sioux Falls and the Black Hills Crisis Pregnancy Center in Rapid City. They want the case to be heard by the entire 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Studies have consistently shown that abortion makes it more likely that women will consider suicide.

A March 2004 report from the National Institutes of Health revealed that suicide is now the third leading cause of death among America’s young people. In fact, for teen girls and young women, the suicide rate has tripled over the past 25 years.

While suicide among women in the typical abortion age range is rising, suicide rates for Americans in general are dropping across the country.

Dr. David Reardon, director of the Springfield, Illinois-based Elliot Institute, says abortion is partly to blame for the increase.

"Given the fact that more than half of all women having abortions are under the age of 25, and more than 20 percent of women having abortions are teenagers, the increased suicide rate among teens and young women is sadly not a surprise," Reardon said

An Elliot Institute study published in August 2003 edition of the Southern Medical Journal found that women who had abortions were seven times more likely to commit suicide than women who gave birth.

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