Abortion Clinic Director Laments That Fewer Women Want Abortions: “We’re a Dying Breed”

National   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   May 2, 2016   |   12:16PM   |   Washington, DC

It’s an encouraging sign when even the states that manage to thwart pro-life efforts are seeing a drop in abortion business.

California is one of the worst states when it comes to protecting unborn babies. It allows nurses to do abortions. It forces pro-life pregnancy centers that offer women life-affirming alternatives to advertise abortions. And while it bans girls under 18 from using tanning beds, it does not require these same young girls to notify a parent before having an abortion.

For all this, California earned an A+ grade from the radical pro-abortion group NARAL. Yet, even in California and a number of other liberal states, abortion facility directors told the news site FiveThirtyEight that their business is going downhill.

Shauna Heckert is the executive director of Women’s Health Specialists of California, a chain of six abortion clinics in northern California. Her abortion business has operated for 40 years, but she said she worries about having to close.

“We are a dying breed,” Heckert told the news outlet.

Peg Johnston, the office manager for the Access for Women in Binghamton, New York, said her abortion facility also is struggling financially.

“We’ve cut every cost we could think of. We have cut salaries. We haven’t given raises. We’re still hanging on by our fingernails,” Johnston said.



Here’s more from the report:

Clinics in California and around the country have stopped operating, not only because of restrictive legislation and policy changes but “because of economics,” [Heckert] said.

As the Supreme Court debates a Texas law that has led to the closure of at least 20 clinics, providers and researchers are noticing a quieter trend: Abortion clinics are closing in blue states, too.

Twelve clinics have closed in California since 2011, along with three in Washington and a number in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, according to data compiled by Bloomberg — all states considered relatively favorable to abortion rights because of their legislative policies. According to Nikki Madsen, executive director of the Abortion Care Network, a national association for independent abortion care providers, for every three independent abortion clinics in her network that close in more conservative states, about two have closed in more liberal states over the past five years. She broadly defines these more liberal states as those that offer Medicaid funding for abortion, almost all of which voted for President Obama in the 2012 election. (A representative for Planned Parenthood, the national organization that provides reproductive health services, including abortions, said that it did not have data on hand for Planned Parenthood clinic closures by state.)

LifeNews also has reported on this trend. In February, Planned Parenthood abortion clinics in Blacksburg, Virginia and Augusta, Georgia both announced that they were closing because of financial problems, LifeNews reported. A Bridgeport, Connecticut abortion clinic also told Bloomberg it closed in 2015 because of reduced demand. A report from Operation Rescue showed 53 abortion clinics closed in 2015 alone.

Some abortion facility operators blamed costs and low abortion fees for the decline; but, according to the report, the cost of an abortion has remained about the same across the past few decades, when adjusted for inflation. The abortion businesses also said low Medicaid reimbursements and efforts to keep costs down for low income women are hurting their abortion businesses.

The latest abortion numbers point to a different reason for the decline.

The Centers for Disease Control reported abortions dropped to a historic low in 2012. Although approximately 699,000 babies lost their lives in abortions in 2012, the latest year CDC has produced figures for, that represents a decline of about half since the highs of more than 1.5 million in the late 1980s. In New York, abortions dropped by 21 percent in the past seven years – despite pro-abortion efforts to push the deadly procedure, LifeNews reported.

Though pro-abortion groups have managed to stop legal protections for unborn babies in some states, they have not been able to stop the pro-life movement from teaching the facts about unborn babies and abortion. As these facts spread, it appears that more women are rejecting abortion in favor of life for their unborn babies.