Austin City Council member calls for Alabama boycott after anti-abortion law passes

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — An Austin City Council member is calling for the city to boycott the state of Alabama after the state passed an anti-abortion law, which she said is the most restrictive in the country.

City Council member Leslie Pool is drafting a resolution that would prohibit the city from doing business with Alabama, including barring any staff traveling to the state for meetings or conventions. 

In a memo posted to the city council message board, she wrote that it was in response to Alabama’s newly passed anti-abortion law, which would make performing an abortion at any stage of pregnancy a felony.

“Alabama’s new statute is an assault on women’s constitutional right to make our own decisions about our reproductive health, and Austin should help fight back,” she wrote.

The law will make performing an abortion at any stage of pregnancy a felony punishable by up to 99 years in prison. The only exception would be when the pregnancy endangers the woman’s health. There will be no punishment for the woman receiving the abortion, only for the abortion provider.

Kentucky, Mississippi, Ohio and Georgia recently have approved bans on abortion once a baby’s heartbeat is detected, which can occur in about the sixth week of pregnancy.

Pool said the last time the city did anything similar was in 2010 after Arizona passed a law that gave state and local law enforcement officers the authority to check the immigration status of anyone stopped for a traffic violation. The boycott was lifted in 2018 after the courts overturned the law.

It’s unclear in what specific ways the city would boycott the state, however, the resolution is expected to be discussed at the council meeting on June 6.

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