South Dakota pro-life advocates continue to report that the Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Sioux Falls, South Dakota is no longer performing abortions after a rigorous informed consent state law took effect earlier this month, though they say further investigation is required for confirmation. “We were the first state that ever made Planned Parenthood put up a closed sign,” one pro-life leader said.
Dr. Allen Unruh, a leader in South Dakota’s Vote Yes for Life campaign, wrote a statement last week describing how on Monday, July 21 a sign on the Planned Parenthood clinic door said it was closed and women who had scheduled abortions were turned away.
“On this Monday, no unborn babies died in South Dakota by an abortion,” he said.
The clinic normally flies in a doctor from Minneapolis, Minnesota to perform fifteen to twenty abortions every Monday.
Dr. Unruh credited the state informed consent law for discouraging doctors from performing abortions.
“The penalties for abortionist's non-compliance could include a prison sentence, loss of medical license, and civil liability. In South Dakota, a wrongful death case can be brought for the death of an unborn child at any age of gestation,” he said.
“Time will tell if an abortionist will take the medical and legal risk of completing abortions in South Dakota without compliance to the 8th Circuit decision,” Unruh continued in his statement. “The new rules are that they must tell the truth. The immediate beneficiaries of this new law are the women and their children. The women will be better informed, and that information, for some, will most likely result in the women keeping their children. More children will live.”
In an interview with CNA on Monday, July 28, Dr. Unruh said there were still indications that no abortions were being performed at the Sioux Falls clinic. Sidewalk counselors had told him that none of the women who were apparently scheduled for abortions had showed at the clinic by 9:30 am.
He said pro-life advocates are still investigating the situation at the Sioux Falls abortion clinic, but Unruh was triumphant.
“We were the first state that ever made Planned Parenthood put up a closed sign,” he told CNA.
When informed of CNA’s Thursday interview with Minnesota-based Planned Parenthood spokeswoman Kathi Di Nicola, who denied that abortion services had stopped in Sioux Falls, Dr. Unruh replied:
“Why didn’t the abortionists fly in on that day? They cannot deny that they had a closed sign there last Monday.”
He told CNA that local pro-lifers feel that the cessation of abortions in South Dakota is a “Gettysburg in the ‘civil war’ for the unborn.”
“What happens in South Dakota can change the world forever,” he said.
Dr. Unruh directed attention to the Initiated Measure 11 Campaign, which he said bans abortions “as birth control” and contains several exceptions which voters had requested in a previous pro-life initiative that failed to pass. He noted that the campaign website is located at www.voteyesforlife.com.