NEW ORLEANS — Lousiana’s three remaining abortion clinics are now closed for the foreseeable future.
A state law passed in 2006, made abortion illegal in Louisiana if the Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade, which it did Friday morning.
The only one in New Orleans locked its doors, shortly after the court struck down the landmark decision that legalized abortion in the country.
People on both sides traveled to the clinic on Friday.
Some to rejoice and celebrate the high court’s decision.
“This is an historic day,” Bill Shanks from United for Life said. “Something we’ve been praying for 36 years; we’ve been out on the street. There were ten of these things in the city when we started. This is the last one.”
Others cried, calling the decision “crushing” and bad for women’s health.
“I came from the day when this was still illegal,” Pamela Girod who lives down the street from the clinic said. “I fought for the right for women to have their access. It’s a sad day, a sad day. It won’t stop anything. It just makes it harder and sadder.”
“I’m a lesbian and I’m not going to be getting an abortion,” said Lindsey, who would only give her first name. “It’s just that like people who don’t have funds and access, it’s going to be really bad.”
“It’s stripping women of their human rights,” Tulane law student Rebecca Goldstein said. “Clearly, we know it’s going to impact people in minorities, low-income women, people who can’t afford to go out of state to get an abortion.”
“The closest state is Illinois if you want to seek an abortion,” Rep. Mandie Landry, D-New Orleans said. “New Mexico, California, New York, not that many people are going to be able to fly out there.”
A woman who volunteered at the New Orleans clinic a couple of days a week also gave us her thoughts on this historic decision.
“I knew what they were going to do, but somehow you hold up that little, tiny hope that maybe it won’t be as bad, maybe they’ll be some little something there that a woman can work with, a person can work with who wants to have an abortion and I was devastated,” Linda Kocher said. “I think it means a lot of hopelessness and a lot of people don’t realize what it’s going to mean because it’s never been personal for them, but it has been personal for me.”
Lakeesha Harris, co-director of LIFT Louisiana, a women’s advocacy group, said the fight isn’t over.
“We will be providing people with support and making sure that they know they can travel outside of the state, legally and that nobody can stop that,” Harris said. “We will still question provide information and support just as we have done all the time and we will continue to fight because to us this is not right. It’s not righteous and quite frankly some of the laws that are being proposed now that Roe has overturned, we’re trying to navigate the waters to see if it’s legal.”
Harris said their lawyers are looking into whether Louisiana’s trigger laws are legal.
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