RALEIGH, N.C. — NARAL Pro-Choice North Carolina members delivered a box of broken cookies to the Governor’s Mansion Thursday morning to mark the upcoming anniversary of the controversial abortion law, according to WTVD-TV.
The women’s reproductive rights group said the gesture is a symbol of Gov. McCrory’s broken campaign promises not to support restrictions on access to abortion care.
“The Governor has said that this law doesn’t do anything to restrict access to abortion care, and that’s just not true, ” said Suzanne Buckley, NARAL Pro-Choice NC, Exec. Director.
Last July, Gov. McCrory signed into law Senate Bill 353.
One day later, he delivered a plate of cookies to angry protesters rallying against the move outside his residence.
“He broke that promise, and then he came out and, what is confusing at best, it sounds like sort of a consolation prize,” said Buckley.
The law stopped government insurance plans from paying for abortions and allows healthcare providers to opt-out of performing the procedure if it’s against their beliefs.
It also requires abortion clinics to meet new NC DHHS standards similar to surgical centers.
So far, those rules haven’t been put into place. There is no deadline.
Gov. McCrory’s communication staff provided a written response to Thursday’s event.
“The law directed DHHS to write new standards or “restrictions” as this group might like to say. Nothing has been implemented. This group seems more interested in playing politics than anything,” said a staffer.
The law’s supporters argue it does not restrict access, but protects women.
“Broken cookies is a silly stunt, and it distracts from the real issue which is protecting unborn lives and protecting women’s health, making it safer for women if they do chose to get an abortion,” said Tami Fitzgerad, NC Values Coalition, Exec. Dir.
Abortion rights supporters are still in the dark about what will be included in the new NC DHHS regulations, but Buckley says she’s encouraged the rules will be created by health officials instead of lawmakers.
“We’ll be working for probably many, many years to try to undo the damage that Gov. McCrory did by signing this law, and this rule-making process is an opportunity for him to keep politics out of women’s healthcare,” said Buckley.