In an op-ed Dr. Yashica Robinson said, "Just as I have for the last 15 years of my medical career, I will continue to deliver babies, give prenatal care -- and provide abortions."
Wednesday marked the signing of a bill into law which prohibits women from getting an abortion unless it directly affects the health of the mother. The Alabama Human Life Protection Act controversially does not exclude the victims of rape and incest under it. The supporters of the ban expected a debate and resistance from the public, so it was no surprise that Dr. Yashica Robinson, the medical director of the Alabama Women's Center for Reproductive Alternatives, who refuses to abide by the law when it comes into effect.
The outrageous law which was recently signed maintains that any doctor who performs or even attempts to perform an abortion would be jailed. The punishment for this can go up to 99 years of imprisonment, while the woman who approaches the doctor for an abortion won't face any charges. To this Robinson wrote in an op-ed for CNN, "I am appalled that I could get a more severe penalty (up to 99 years in prison) for providing safe abortion care than someone who commits second-degree rape."
Robinson challenged the government saying she would not stop performing abortions even after the law comes into effect. She wrote, "But the new law, which does not take effect for six months and faces inevitable court challenges, will not change my daily routine as an OB-GYN. Just as I have for the last 15 years of my medical career, I will continue to deliver babies, give prenatal care -- and provide abortions."
She added, "As a mother and a physician, this abortion ban is deeply personal. I carry both these identities with me as I care for women and honor their decisions to become parents or to terminate their pregnancies." Clearly, her views were not limited to the suffering of incest and rape victims. She stated that she "Understands the struggle to make that choice. I became pregnant when I was in high school. Because of my fear and lack of resources, I didn't confide in my mother or grandmother until it was too late to have an abortion. I love my children with all my heart, but I know that everyone should be able to make this decision for themselves."
"I deliver babies, I provide prenatal care. But I understand that pregnant women … will make the decision that a pregnancy needs to end in abortion," says Dr. Yashica Robinson. "I'm happy to be with women and be supportive of them, no matter what that decision is." pic.twitter.com/8pFf0cAdoX— Democracy Now! (@democracynow) May 17, 2019
Robinson further expressed her anger at "the politicians who do not see women as responsible decision makers" and so she believes that the decision she makes in such situations is outlawed. She also noted, "I am enraged that the state of Alabama would force me to choose between what is ethical and medically appropriate care and breaking the law." Furthermore, she conveyed her concern about the doctors who would rather leave Alabama than "stay and practice substandard medicine" once the law goes into effect.
TODAY: Amid a wave of restrictive abortion laws, we speak to Dr. Yashica Robinson, the director of one of the only remaining abortion clinics in Alabama, and @robinmarty, author of "Handbook for a Post-Roe America." Watch now: 8-9 AM at https://t.co/Xup8cdtnFB pic.twitter.com/oqoAbzYiGu— Democracy Now! (@democracynow) May 17, 2019
Describing her concern for one of her patients she wrote, "And I am afraid for patients, particularly when I reflect on treatment I recently provided for one woman. She was 22 weeks pregnant and had a condition called preeclampsia, which is when high blood pressure puts the health of the mother and baby at risk and can result in death. The only option in that situation was to immediately deliver." The patient acknowledged the high risk and chose to abort the baby but it took them a long time to convince the other doctors and the hospital due to the hostility that was going around due to the law.
Dr. Yashica Robinson helps run the Alabama Women's Center.— Earvin Solitario (@earvs) May 14, 2019
It is one of three remaining clinics in the state that provides abortion to women.
She tells @AndrewCBC that the bill set for a vote tonight in #Alabama is "dangerous for women."
She is convinced that if the law was to pass, physicians would hesitate to think about what's best for the patients due to the impending threat of criminal penalties passed by the State government. As per CNN, Alabama already has a high amount of mortality rate when it comes to pregnant women. In 2017, the Alabama Department of Public Health reported 31 maternal deaths out of 100,000 white women who gave birth. Remaining hopeful she wrote, "The law will almost certainly be stopped in court." Finally, she ended her piece with a request, "I urge the politicians in Alabama, and those around the country, please stop trying to make it harder for people to access health care. Instead, help me turn this vision into a reality."
Do you want to know why we do what we do? Read about our very own Dr. Yashica Robinson in @Bustle! 4 Independent Abortion Provider Staffers Open Up About Their Work & What Keeps Them Going. #IndiesProvide https://t.co/b75d8YzAs8 pic.twitter.com/UIjhrwmE4L— Alabama Women's Center (@ALWomensCenter) December 17, 2018