Reproductive rights protesters agitate onlookers

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STORY AND PHOTOS OF KAREN BOSSICK

That roar you heard cascading down Main Street Hailey on Monday afternoon?

That was for more than 50 people who marched for reproductive rights during the Hailey Days of the Old West 4th of July Parade.

They turned out on Independence Day for the rights they believed had been stripped from Americans by the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. They carried signs urging “abort court” and “don’t trample on me.” And they left some parade spectators shaking their heads in amazement at the thunderous reception they received.

Charging

Protesters brought up the rear of the 4th of July Parade.

“There are those who need an abortion. Abortion is health care,” Stevie Gawryluk told protesters before the parade. “We need to keep that option open for people”

Christine Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood for 40 years and host of the “Fall of Roe” podcast, He said the most important thing for Idahoans to know right now is that nothing changes until the changes are officially announced. The Idaho prosecutor’s office expects the ban to go into effect in late August or early September and that could be delayed due to Planned Parenthood’s legal challenge.

People with medical appointments should stay in touch with their health care providers for updates, he said. If the ban goes into effect, abortions will still be available in Washington, Oregon and Nevada and, for the foreseeable future, in Montana.

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“Historically, Idaho has lacked the infrastructure to enforce actions against people who leave the state to go to neighboring states to do what is legal there. In general, however, abortion bans affect people far beyond those seeking to terminate an unwanted pregnancy,” she said.

Charging

Stevie Gawryluk warns protesters that they may encounter resistance, but they must take the right path.

Those impacts include the possibility of infertility treatments being stopped. Physicians may be concerned with helping patients with a planned or crisis pregnancy. Miscarriages of planned pregnancies could also be examined in an environment hostile to abortion care, particularly Yes Idaho bounty law upheld.

The reward law allows family members to turn over pregnant relatives for a $20,000 reward if those who facilitated an abortion are found guilty.

“Rewards laws like those in Idaho and Texas will be challenged, and medical establishments that cooperate with this scheme could be subject to fines for serious HIPAA violations,” he said.

Gawryluk urged the protesters to reach out to politicians.

Charging

The march attracted both young and old.

“A phone call takes 30 seconds. A letter in a few minutes,” she said. “We are in this together. Others will see us go and know they are not alone.”

Charging

Protesters gathered outside the Blaine County Courthouse.