Nevada’s New Abortion Bill Wants To Protect Reproductive Rights, Not Take Them Away

It’s been a long, hard few months for supporters of the abortion rights movement. The growing trend of anti-abortion legislation has all but dominated the news cycle, offering what might feel, for some, like a never-ending onslaught of terrible news. But on Tuesday, some good news could be found for those in favor of a woman’s right to choose: the Nevada state Assembly passed the Trust Nevada Women Act with the aim of removing a number of criminal penalties related to abortion.

According to The Huffington Post, the bill was passed by the Nevada state Assembly with a 27-13 vote; it’s already been passed by the state Senate, and will now go to Gov. Steve Sisolak for a signature. The New York Times reports that Sisolak is expected to sign the bill.

Per MyNews4, this legislation, which was sponsored by state Sen. Yvanna Cancela, wants to remove criminal penalties for those who terminate a pregnancy without talking to a physician. It also has several other goals: it aims to repeal the requirement that physicians document a pregnant woman’s marital status, and plans to remove the criminal penalty for anyone who gives a woman medication to induce abortion without a physician’s explicit advice.

On Tuesday, Cancela told a crowd of supporters, per MyNews4, that Nevada was a "shining beacon" for abortion rights across the country, but admitted "it has felt awful the last few weeks in the fight for woman’s reproductive freedom."

Cancela continued, "We’re here today fighting a national fight and getting to see Nevada move forward."

The news of bill’s success on Tuesday came on the same day of the #StopAbortionBans protest, which took place in the form of hundreds of pro-choice rallies across the country, all of which speaking out in defensive of legal abortion and reproductive rights. And though it might seem like Nevada is one of the only states to reflect good news for supporters of abortion rights these days, there are other states who are working to push similar pro-choice legislation.

Per The New York Times, several pro-abortion efforts are taking place at the legislative level in states across the country: a Vermont bill aims to prohibit the government from interfering in any way with a woman’s right to an abortion; additionally, the governors of Wisconsin and Michigan have promised to veto upcoming anti-abortion legislation, if the bills make it to their desks. Additionally, The Huffington Post notes that the states of Illinois, Kansas, Maine, and Rhode Island are also all considering various pro-choice legislation. For example, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled last month that the state’s constitution ensured a woman’s right to an abortion, regardless of whether Roe v. Wade is overturned or not.

It might be overwhelming at points, trying to decide whether you should put your attention towards the good news or the bad news. If you want to learn more about the anti-abortion legislation being considered at the state level across the nation, you can check out this piece on the various states that have passed abortion bans in 2019. If you want to spend some time learning up on the states that are making moves towards protecting reproductive rights, you can check out this piece on pro-abortion legislative efforts, instead.

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