July 8, 2013 — The North Carolina Senate last week became the latest state legislative body to pass stricter regulations for abortion clinics, "ostensibly in the name of safety," a Washington Post editorial states, adding that in fact, the rules "probably will have little effect on patient safety."
The North Carolina regulations were attached "at the last minute" to an unrelated bill, the editorial notes. "North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R) has rightly spoken out against the shoddy way these amendments were added," the editorial states. McCrory said in a statement, "Regardless of what party is in charge or what important issue is being discussed, ... the process must be appropriate and thorough."
The amendments would require clinics to make various "costly and cosmetic" changes, such as "widen[ing] hallways, doorways and even entrance awnings," according to the editorial. It adds that women's health advocates fear the regulations would force all but one of the state's abortion clinics to close.
"In pretending to promote safety, the actual accomplishment of these amendments would be to place an undue burden on women seeking abortions" and reduce "access to licensed, well-equipped providers," the editorial continues.
"These restrictions are disingenuous attempts to infringe on a woman's ability to make constitutionally protected decisions in consultation with her doctor," the editorial states (Washington Post, 7/7).