New York , Reuters:A recent study by the Pew Research Center found a country divided – 51% of Americans say abortion should be legal in all or most cases and 43% say it should be illegal all or most of the time.
The 1 in 3 campaign commissioned a play, “Out of Silence,” that uses the voices of women who have had abortions. It has been performed more than two dozen times on college campuses. Laura Reid, 21, a psychology major, performed “Out of Silence” at her college, Texas A&M University.
The play triggered on-campus debate and the campus newspaper asked her to publish an opinion piece on abortion, she said. “We’ve had a lot of conversations with people who have said that they don’t support abortion, but they wouldn’t deny it to somebody else,” she said.
An image on abortion stigma uploaded by Amelia Bonow on her social media accounts
US woman fights stigma of abortion in a creative way
Reid said she saw a need to share the stories after the local abortion clinic closed down in 2013 over funding cuts. Students now seeking a surgical abortion must travel about 100 miles (160 km)to Houston, Reid said. Texas has become ground zero of the national abortion debate, with a major case before the U.S. Supreme Court challenging the state’s law.
Lauren Mitchell, in New York City, opted to challenge public opinion by co-founding the Doula Project which trains people to accompany women having abortions or giving birth.It has spawned dozens of similar efforts across the country. Mitchell said she has accompanied about 1,000 women as an abortion doula, talking to them, holding their hands and being in the room during their procedures.
She recalled a woman who, for rare medical reasons, needed to have a labor induction abortion in a New York hospital but had to wait for a day and half.
“If a doula hadn’t been there, she might have been alone,” she said.