State Capitol News
10:06 am
Mon November 26, 2012

New State Website About Abortions Goes Live

The new state website aims to provide more information about abortions -- and potentially dissuade some women from going ahead. 

State Health Director Will Humble
State Health Director Will Humble
Credit Howard Fischer / Capitol Media Services file photo

Legislation approved earlier this year bans abortions at 20 weeks of gestation. That part of the law is on hold pending court review. But the same measure also requires the health department to provide a list of things that can go wrong. The web site, which went live last week, also has an ever-developing list of services available to women who decide to keep their babies, from adoption services to diaper banks. Rep. Kimberly Yee who sponsored the measure said she hopes it might convince some women not to go through with the procedure. But state health director Will Humble said swaying women is not his concern.

"It's not for me to decide what we're going to do regarding information about abortion procedures," Humble said. "My job is to carry out the laws that lawmakers in Arizona have passed."

Humble said it's no different than being directed by voters, as the ultimate lawmakers, to set up a medical marijuana program . But Humble said the requirement to list possible complications from abortions does not obligate him to list everything that is within the realm of possibility.

"We looked for sources top document in fact whether that, in fact, there's evidence to support that," he said.  "And we couldn't find that evidence. So that's not on our web site."

The site does mention that there are things that can go wrong medically in carrying a baby to term.