New Restrictions on Abortion: Protecting Irrational Women Everywhere (in Arizona, Anyway)

Kate Sheese

az_capitolEarlier this month, the Arizona state House voted to impose new restrictions on abortion, including a mandatory 24-hour waiting period during which a woman is required to receive information – in person – regarding the anatomical characteristics of the foetus at its particular stage of development and the apparent abundance of available support options if she decides against having an abortion.

There are a number of problematic assumptions that underlie these kinds of restrictions and these assumptions need to be made apparent in order to have any kind of productive and meaningful discussion on abortion and reproductive rights. These assumptions should be of particular concern to psychologists and psychological researchers who have been given a unique role in the debate over abortion as women’s psychological well-being is consistently invoked on both sides to prove either the necessity or harm of restricting access to abortion.

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