NIRH Applauds Latest Midwest Action to Advance Abortion Access as Wisconsin Introduces “Respect Women Act”

October 12, 2017
Contact: Stephanie Reichin, 617-549-3745, [email protected]

Statement by National Institute for Reproductive Health President Andrea Miller

“Today, Wisconsin joins a heartening national trend of states introducing proactive reproductive health agendas to push back against state and federal attacks on their residents’ rights to access comprehensive care — including abortion. Following their northern neighbor Illinois’ move to allow Medicaid coverage of abortion at the end of last month, Wisconsin State Senator Jon Erpenbach and Wisconsin State Representative Chris Taylor have introduced three key provisions within the “Respect Women Act” package:

  1. The Respect Access to Care Act: Would enshrine the right to access abortion in state law; repeal Wisconsin abortion restrictions not grounded in medical evidence.
  2. The Respect Medical Accuracy Act: Would ensure patients receive evidence-based information from their doctor, protecting the doctor-patient relationship from political interference.
  3. The Respect Patient and Provider Safety Act: Would provide law enforcement with training to better prevent and respond to acts of harassment and intimidation at reproductive health care clinics.

“The National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) is proud to have partnered with the Wisconsin Alliance for Women’s Health to aid in the introduction of the Respect Women Act. Wisconsin has passed more than 20 anti-abortion laws in the past 40 years and anti-choice leadership in Washington, DC is working overtime to dismantle access to reproductive health care – today’s bold action by Sen. Erpenbach and Rep. Taylor is needed now more than ever.

“Today’s action builds critical momentum to improve women’s health and lives; state and local advocacy is powerful, even in locales that have been traditionally hostile to reproductive rights. Now it is time for the legislature to move the Respect Women Act forward and safeguard the rights of Wisconsin women, no matter what happens at the federal level.”


The National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) builds power at the state and local levels to change public policy, galvanize public support, and normalize women’s decisions about abortion and contraception.