Tampa Bay Abortion Fund Statement on Florida’s 15-Week Abortion Ban

Tampa Bay Abortion Fund Statement on Florida’s 15-Week Abortion Ban

TBAF will continue assisting individuals in the Tampa Bay area seeking abortion locally and outside of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

TAMPA, FL — July 1, 2022 — Yesterday, a Leon County judge blocked Florida’s HB 5, which bans abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The law was challenged by a number of Florida abortion clinics, including three of Tampa Bay Abortion Fund’s partner clinics: St. Petersburg Woman’s Health Center, Bread & Roses Woman’s Health Center and Planned Parenthood North Tampa. While this decision is a small victory for abortion rights, the 15-week abortion ban will go into effect today and will remain in effect until the injunction is signed. Additionally, we expect it will take at least two weeks for clinics to feel comfortable scheduling clients for abortions past 15 weeks of pregnancy. 

While the courts navigate the legal process, Tampa Bay Abortion Fund will help clients navigate the uncertainty. As we wait for the judge to sign the injunction that would prevent the enforcement of the 15-week ban, Tampa Bay Abortion Fund is proceeding as planned to ensure all our clients receive seamless abortion care until HB 5 is officially blocked. Additionally, it is highly likely that the ban will go through several iterations and could be reinstated entirely (pending the state’s appeal). At this point, abortion care after 15 weeks is not guaranteed in Florida. But we are committed to helping pregnant people visiting clinics in the Tampa Bay area from Florida or nearby states or traveling from the Tampa Bay area out of state for service in a timely manner. 

“Abortion is essential health care. It is accessible and legal in this state now, and it will remain so up to 24 weeks should Judge Cooper’s stay not be overturned,” says Kris Lawler, Tampa Bay Abortion Fund Board President. “Any restrictions serve as an additional barriers for individuals who already face significant challenges when seeking abortion care. We have been building capacity and establishing partnerships with abortion funds and clinics in abortion-friendly states to help pregnant people receive care outside of Florida if and when they need it regardless of the appeal process — which does not recognize the time-sensitive needs of people on the ground.”

Yesterday’s’s decision has left abortion seekers in Florida confused about where and how to receive care. Tampa Bay Abortion Fund and our out-of-state partners are ready to help. With the partnerships and planning we already have in place, TBAF can ensure uninterrupted access to abortions today, tomorrow and every day.

To assist people who are traveling to receive abortion care, TBAF is working with the National Network of Abortion Funds’ Operation Scale Up, serving Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia, and the Regional Logistics Center, created by Planned Parenthood St. Louis Region and the Hope Clinic for Women, in Illinois. TBAF is also partnering with the Emergency Assistance Fund, and organizations like the Brigid Alliance, to provide logistical and travel support for Tampa Bay-area residents who will be forced to seek abortion care in other states. While this list is subject to grow or change after July 1, TBAF currently supports a number of out-of-state clinics for Florida residents, including:

While yesterday’s news is certainly a positive outcome,Tampa Bay Abortion Fund will move forward with assisting clients seeking abortions past 15 weeks outside of Florida as the decision moves its way through the courts. For the latest information on scheduling an appointment, visit tbafund.com.

We are also calling on the Tampa Bay community to continue spreading the message about abortion options, including self-managed abortion, and continue funding abortion care. To learn more about TBAF and donate, visit tbafund.com.

ABOUT TAMPA BAY ABORTION FUND:

The Tampa Bay Abortion Fund removes financial and logistical barriers to abortion access. It specifically assists pregnant people needing support seeking abortion at providers throughout Tampa Bay. TBAF is volunteer-run and funds our callers through donations and grants.

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CONTACT:

Tampa Bay Abortion Fund

info@tbafund.com

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