Self-Managed Abortion Is Medically Very Safe. But Is It Legally Safe?

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“Jane” was the code name of a feminist abortion referral and counseling service in Chicago from 1969 to 1973. Pictured: A poster with a Laura Kaplan quote that reads, “Those of us who were members of Jane were remarkable only because we chose to act with women’s needs as our guide. In doing so we transformed illegal abortion from a dangerous, sordid experience into one that was life-affirming and powerful.” (JustSeeds)

Between 1969 and 1973, feminists in Chicago with no formal medical training formed an underground abortion service called Jane that performed nearly 12,000 safe illegal abortions.

Today, as many states increasingly restrict medical professionals’ ability to offer abortion, women are once again finding ways to access safe abortion on their own. 

A big difference between the two eras, however, is abortion pills—mifepristone and…

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