Going Undercover at a Crisis Pregnancy Center

“I’m pregnant,” I lied, sitting across from a staffer at a Crisis Pregnancy Center. “We’ll do everything we can to help,” she lied back.

For every one abortion clinic in the U.S., there are three crisis pregnancy centers. In the face of their anti-abortion disinformation, we must fight back—because lives depend on it.

The War on Women Report: Republicans Blame Unmarried Women for Midterm Results; 80% of Pregnancy-Related Deaths Can Be Prevented

U.S. patriarchal authoritarianism is on the rise, and democracy is on the decline. But day after day, we stay vigilant in our goals to dismantle patriarchy at every turn. The fight is far from over. We are watching, and we refuse to go back. This is the War on Women Report.

This month: Brittney Griner is released from a racist and homophobic penal colony; abortion access is still in shambles despite midterm victories; House Speaker Nancy Pelosi plans to step down; three high-profile mass shootings in a matter of weeks; and more.

Anti-Abortion ‘Crisis Pregnancy Centers’ Face New Accountability Post-Roe

Post-Roe, the anti-abortion movement is funneling more resources to crisis pregnancy centers that use these tactics in order to block access to abortion healthcare, both in states with bans and in states that protect reproductive rights.

Over 2,500 crisis pregnancy centers across the U.S. provide virtually no medical services, spreading fabricated claims about the dangers of abortion. Public officials are taking actions to hold CPCs accountable for their deceptive practices.

How Texas’ Abortion Laws Turned a Heartbreaking Fetal Diagnosis Into a Cross-Country Journey

Texas’ conflicting and confusing laws on abortion have already caused catastrophic problems for pregnancy care.

“It was just a matter of time before the baby died, or maybe I’d have to go through the trauma of carrying to term knowing I wasn’t bringing a baby home,” said 27-year-old Lauren Hall, who traveled to Seattle all the way from Texas to have an abortion. “I couldn’t do that.”

Keeping Score: Young and Minority Americans Feel Unsafe at Polls; Students Say Abortion Laws Will Affect College Decisions; Lawmakers Advance Menstrual Equity

In every issue of Ms., we track research on our progress in the fight for equality, catalogue can’t-miss quotes from feminist voices and keep tabs on the feminist movement’s many milestones. We’re Keeping Score online, too—in in this biweekly round-up.

This week: Colorado and Scotland pass laws to eliminate taxes on menstrual products and provide free products in public, respectively; Pennsylvania becomes 27th state to restrict conversion therapy; young Black and Latinx Americans feel especially unsafe at polling locations; CDC director criticizes agency’s handling of COVID-19 and monkeypox outbreaks in the U.S.; Biden’s new tax law imposes minimum corporate taxes and supports environmentalist efforts; and more.

ICYMI: ‘Everything You Need to Know About Birth Control’ with Dr. Sophia Yen

In this time of crisis, Dr. Sophia Yen says it’s essential we take charge of our own reproductive health. Yen is the CEO and co-founder of Pandia Health, the only doctor-led and women-founded and -led birth control delivery company. She is a board-certified physician with a focus in adolescent medicine, and serves as a clinical associate professor at Stanford Medical School in the Department of Pediatrics.

In a Ms. webinar on Tuesday, “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Birth Control,” Yen broke down the best forms of birth control and emergency contraception, why you should consider skipping your period, how to get abortion pills (even if you live in a state with a ban), and more.

President Biden Mobilizes Federal Resources to Support Abortion Access for All

On Friday, President Joseph Biden issued an executive order to protect reproductive rights after the Supreme Court overturned the constitutional right to abortion in the Dobbs decision.

Biden’s executive order first directs HHS to take actions to protect and expand access to abortion medications regulated by the FDA. It also aims to ensure the reproductive health of people accessing care in federally-funded facilities. The order directs HHS to ensure enforcement of the Affordable Care Act’s guarantee of free birth control and contraceptive counseling for individuals and covered dependents, including emergency contraception and long-acting reversible contraception like IUDs.

Democrats in Congress Introduce Bill to Crack Down on Fake Clinics and Anti-Abortion Disinformation

On June 23, members of Congress introduced the Stop Anti-Abortion Disinformation (SAD) Act to crack down on false advertising related to abortion services by “crisis pregnancy centers” (CPCs). CPCs are anti-abortion organizations that masquerade as abortion clinics in order to interfere with access to reproductive healthcare by disseminating inaccurate, misleading and stigmatizing information about abortion and contraception. Despite appearances, most CPCs do not employ licensed medical personnel or provide referrals for birth control or abortion care.

In the House, the lead sponsors of the SAD Act are Reps. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Suzanne Bonamici (D-Ore.), In the Senate, the bill is led by Sens. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). “No one should have to question that the person they are seeking medical advice from is actually a doctor or that information is accurate, objective and complete,” said Maloney.

Senators Introduce Bill To Protect Reproductive Health Data: ‘My Body, My Data’

The digital surveillance threats to women’s reproductive health information are likely to escalate dramatically if the Supreme Court repeals abortion rights. U.S. Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Representative Sara Jacobs (D-Calif.) introduced the My Body, My Data Act—a federal law protecting personal reproductive health data by minimizing the information that companies can collect and retain.

“Extreme Republicans across the country aren’t only trying to take away women’s constitutional rights, they want to actually put people in jail for providing or seeking reproductive care,” said Hirono. “This legislation will take steps to protect women’s privacy.”