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Survey Shows Increase in Violence Against Abortion Providers, Clinics

Survey Shows Increase in Violence Against Abortion Providers, Clinics

January 30, 2015 — Abortion providers are experiencing an increase in threats and intimidation from abortion-rights opponents, according to a Feminist Majority Foundation survey, Medical Daily reports.

The survey marks the group's first comprehensive look at the issue nationwide since 2010.

Key Findings

Overall, the survey found that antiabortion-rights-related violence affects 19.7% of abortion clinics in the U.S.

The survey found that abortion providers are facing more targeted harassment, such as "wanted-style" posters and pamphlets that identify clinics' staff members and disclose their personal data and pictures (Castillo, Medical Daily, 1/28). The proportion of clinics that faced these types of threats increased from 26.6% in 2010 to 51.9% in 2014 (FMF survey, January 2015).

The survey also showed increases in other types of extreme antiabortion-rights threats, including break-ins, vandalism and severe violence. According to the report, "[A]nti-abortion extremists strategically target a vulnerable minority of clinics, aiming to force them to close their doors before moving on to the next set of targets."

In addition, the researchers found that women visiting abortion clinics not only face shaming and other harassment, but that restricted access to abortion clinics can be associated with intimate partner violence, maternal death and other negative effects on women's health (Medical Daily, 1/28).