Ensure abortion access in Montana

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While many of us spend a lot of time fighting against anti-abortion legislation, crazy lawmakers and their ballot initiatives, there is a whole other group of people pro-actively working to ensure women’s access to abortion–by providing them.
Last week I was at the National Coalition of Abortion Providers Conference (talking about abortion doulas) and Dr. Susan Wicklund spoke about her new book (along with our very own Jessica!). Dr. Wicklund is an abortion provider living in Montana, and has written a touching memoir of her life as a provider. She lives in Bozeman, MT currently and wants to open up a new clinic (in an area with few options for women) but has run into a lot of hurdles. Building owners who won’t lease to her under pressure from anti-choice people mainly.
So to help Dr. Wicklund some of the attendees of the conference opened a paypal account in her name, to help her open her clinic (possibly by buying a building). Want to chip in? Email supportsuewicklund@gmail.com and ask for information about how to donate!

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9 Comments

  1. Olphy
    Posted May 22, 2008 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    I saw Dr. Wicklund on Book TV last weekend. She has some pretty amazing stories, it was an interesting program.

  2. Posted May 22, 2008 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

    I should get my hands on her book. As a Montana native this issue hits close to home. The Montana legislature (courtesy of some crazy in the Constitution party I believe)just recently proposed an amendment(CI-100) to the state constitution that would redefine when life begins–thereby granting a fertilized egg personhood. As of now it’s still in petition stage, but thank goodness I turned 18 in time to vote no. Being pro-choice in Montana isn’t terribly easy.

  3. Amber schn0562
    Posted May 22, 2008 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

    I highly recommend her book. It has a lot of eye opening info a lot of us never think about.

  4. Morph
    Posted May 22, 2008 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    Anyone who hasn’t read this book really should. It’s amazing. I live in Montana, but I live in a city with an excellent clinic, and I know others aren’t so fortunate.
    However, the comment that “being pro-choice in Montana is hard” is innaccurate. Montana consistently attains good marks on “pro-choice report careds” NARAL gave us an A-,) and most anti-choice measures are defeated, if they ever even make it that far in the Legislature. Easily our biggest barrier to reporductive choice in Montana is provider availability, but a significant factor in that is simply how large and sparsely populated the state is. We lack a lot of different types of provider availability, not simply abortion providers. In the 10 years I’ve lived here, I’ve seen various anti-choice propositions show up in the papers, and they nearly always get laughed off the page. Montana takes the hands-off approach to laws pretty damned seriously. And most of the people I know take the same hands-off approach as well. There are a lot of folks who are uncomfortable with abortion, but rarely do I run into someone who thinks they should be able to make the decision for me. Hell, it was “harder being pro-choice” where I grew up in New Jersey than where I now live in Montana.
    As for CI-100, that’s Rick Jore’s doing, and no one takes that nut seriously. People who agree with Rick Jore don’t take him seriously. The only reason the state GOP even speaks to him is because he became a political spoiler in a tight State House division. Though I see he’s been editing his own Wikipedia article. =)
    All that being said, our anti-choicers consist of both some fairly sane and some pretty nutty people, and I know Dr. Wickland went through a fair amount of nonsense last time around. I was very excited to hear she was re-opening the Bozeman clinic, so thanks for this heads up so I can find out how to help!

  5. lindsey_ann
    Posted May 22, 2008 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for a more accurate view of Montana, Morph. I’ve lived most of my life in a tiny town that can’t keep a GP around, much less provide abortion services, so my view is a wee bit skewed. Sorry about that. Plus, I’ve been to school with girls who would completely ostracize a 14 year old for even considering an abortion. I’m a slightly bitter young dumb ass making blanket statements about my home state. Apologies all around; pay me no mind. :)

  6. lindsey_ann
    Posted May 22, 2008 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    Oh, yeah…why am I not surprised that CI-100 is Rick Jore’s doing? I really do apologize…That guy’s so not worth getting upset about.

  7. Posted May 22, 2008 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

    You met Susan Wicklund? Oh, I would love to get in touch with her. I loved her book, and she is one of my personal heroes.

  8. String_Bean_Jen
    Posted May 22, 2008 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the heads-up, Miriam! I will totally donate. I read Dr. Wicklund’s book a few weeks ago and was in tears throughout most of it. I have been recommending it to anyone because these front-line stories from abortion providers are few and far between.
    In fact, I was wondering what Dr. Wicklund was doing nowadays because the end of the book was vague on that so I’m very excited to hear she’s going to open a new clinic in Montana! What a fascinating part of the country. I know it will be an amazing clinic.

  9. kalidikeds
    Posted May 22, 2008 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Morph for making me feel MUCH better about being pro-choice in Montana! I’m about to do some volunteer work to help shoot down CI-100, and I have to admit, the idea of facing anti-choicers has me feeling a bit nervous. I feel pretty confident about it now, so thanks again!
    I can’t wait to read this book! My friend told me about it, but she couldn’t remember the title or the author. Thank god for Feministing; my Google searches for “abortion doctor book” were getting me nowhere.

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