Committee: House Health and Government Operations
The Catholic Conference represents the public policy interests of the three (arch)dioceses serving Maryland, the Archdioceses of Baltimore and Washington, D.C., and the Diocese of Wilmington, which together encompass over one million Marylanders.
HB 1167 seeks to prohibit an individual from committing or threatening certain actions with the intent of coercing a pregnant woman to have an abortion
Given that abortion is ubiquitous in our state, Maryland women are not looking for abortion expansion but rather help with the basic necessities they need to survive and thrive. Nationally, a majority of low-income women identify as prolife (Gallup), and 75% of Latinos and African Americans support abortion restrictions (Marist).
Offering abortion without providing alternatives is reproductive coercion. Maryland women want support to be able to achieve their dreams and raise their children. This legislation would recognize the resiliency and abilities of women to parent and pursue their dreams without being coerced into choosing abortion. It is not more abortion that Maryland needs, but a clear understanding of the diverse demographic in our state and support and resources for growing families.
It is for these reasons that the Maryland Catholic Conference respectfully urges a favorable report for HB 1167. Thank you for your consideration.