Arizona is one of the most restrictive states in terms of reproductive rights, along with Arkansas, Iowa and Texas. These states banned second trimester abortion procedures known as dilation and evacuation, they also require proper burial and cremation of fetal remains and they’ve increased the amount of medical records requested by a provider.

Arizona has added one more thing to their list of requirements when it comes to abortion care – providing a reason as to why they’re seeking one. This new law was signed behind closed doors by Republican Gov. Doug Ducey this past weekend. According to Senate Bill 1394, doctors must ask women the reason for choosing an abortion – they’re specifically questioning whether the pregnancy was a result of rape or if they’re victims of domestic abuse or sex trafficking. While doctors are now required to ask these questions, the law does grant patients permission to not go through with the questionnaire or answer the doctor’s questions.

Senate Bill 1394 also requires doctors to report the patient’s answers to the Arizona Department of Health Services, which already collects abortion-related stats from doctors. Patient names must be kept confidential when reporting their questionnaire information.

Those who support this new law argue that the questionnaire will help sexual assault survivors and sex-trafficking victims by enforcing physicians to provide support services and contact law enforcement. However, Democrats, experts on domestic abuse, pro-choice activists and reproductive rights advocates argue that it’s no one’s business, except the person in need of the procedure, as to why they need abortion care. They’re also worried that the questionnaire might scare women who might be in a dangerous situations. In a recent article, Jason Vail Cruz from the Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence said, “It really adds another layer of trauma to a situation that’s already fraught with a lot of stigma and nerves.”

Jodi Liggett, the executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona, also had something important to say on the matter in a statement given to Refinery29, “It’s no wonder Gov. Ducey signed this intrusive law behind closed doors. Senate Bill 1394 is a bill that proponents claim is about women’s health and safety. Let’s be clear: This law, along with the dozens of other laws passed in recent years, will not improve the lives or health care for people who need it in the state.”

She also stated, "No mainstream medical organization supports this bill. Instead of shaming and harassing women seeking health care, we urge policymakers to focus on respectful solutions that increase access to birth control and help women who want to plan or prevent pregnancy to do so."

According to, Guttmacher Institute, as of January 1st, 2018, the following restrictions on abortion were in effect in Arizona:

  • The use of telemedicine to administer medication abortion is prohibited.
  • The parent of a minor must consent before an abortion is provided.
  • The Medicaid program does not provide coverage for medically necessary abortions, despite a court order directing it to do so.
  • A woman must receive state-directed counseling that includes information designed to discourage her from having an abortion and then wait 24 hours before the procedure is provided. Counseling must be provided in person and must take place before the waiting period begins, thereby calling for two trips to the facility.
  • Health plans offered in the state’s health exchange under the Affordable Care Act can only cover abortion if the woman's life is endangered or her health is severely compromised.
  • Abortion is covered in insurance policies for public employees only in cases in which the woman's life is endangered or her health is severely compromised.
  • A woman must undergo an ultrasound at least 24 hours before obtaining an abortion; the provider must offer her the option to view the image.

Facilities that provide abortions, such as Planned Parenthood, also provide a safe space and health care. These facilities are always accepting donations to continue to be able to provide for those who are in need of the many services they provide.