A recent report indicated a decrease in Michigans abortion rates, which pro-life advocates attributed to changes in legislation and increased pro-life efforts within the state.
The Michigan Department of Community Health released statistics showing that 26,269 abortions were performed in the state in 2004, an 11.1% decrease from the 29,540 abortions performed in 2003. Overall, abortions in Michigan have declined by 46.5% since 1987.
Michigan is showing a true climate of life with the decrease of abortions. More and more women are rejecting abortion and making the positive choice of life for their babies, said Barbara Listing, President of Right to Life of Michigan.
The decline in abortions is the result of several factors, says Right to Life of Michigan. Laws that regulate access to abortion, including parental consent and informed consent laws, have contributed to the decrease. Efforts by prolife groups in education and lobbying for prolife legislation have also had an impact.
Prolife advocates hope that a new bill, called the Ultrasound Viewing Requirement, will further decrease the number of abortions in the state. The bill would require doctors to offer women who seek an abortion the chance to see an ultrasound of their unborn baby. Prolife groups hope that seeing the image of their unborn child will deter women from abortion.
The statewide statistics reflect the nationwide trend reported by the Alan Guttmacher Institute last week. The report showed that abortions in the U.S. dropped to 1.29 million in 2002, the lowest numbers since 1976.
Prolife groups applauded the news and pledged to continue their efforts to protect the sanctity of life.
"We will continue to reach out to women in need so that they know that abortion is not their only option. There are far too many women who enter an abortion clinic thinking they have no other choices, said Listing.