A study published by the Guttmacher Institute found that 55 percent of reproductive-age women in the United States reside in states that are “hostile” to women’s rights to have an abortion. This is an increase from the 31 percent found in a 2000 student.
Rachel Benson Gold, “In 2000, the country was more evenly divided: nearly a third of women lived in states solidly hostile to abortion rights, slightly more than a third in states supportive of abortion rights and close to a third in middle-ground states. By 2011, however, more than half of women of reproductive age lived in hostile states. This growth came largely at the expense of the states of the middle. Only one in 10 women lived in a middle-ground state by 2011.”
Elizabeth Nash, Guttmacher’s state issue manager, indicated that states in the North and on the West coast were more supportive of abortion rights. Moreover, in 2000, half of the 13 states in the South were opposed to abortion rights; however, by 2011, all had become hostile to abortion rights.
The researchers determined whether states were hostile based on whether they required parental consent prior to a minor’s abortion; required pre abortion counseling and/or an ultrasound for women seeking abortions; prohibited Medicaid funding of abortion, expect if the women’s life was endangered or she had been a victim or rape or incest; limited abortion coverage in private health plans; imposed “medically inappropriate restrictions on the provision of medication abortion”; or required “onerous requirements” for facilities that perform abortions.”
Guttmacher Institute 3/15/12