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Effect of Rowe v. Wade reversal in the US Military.

Blackadder1916

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A microcosm of the wider debate on the Roe v. Wade reversal is the effect in the US military. While the provision of abortion services in US military medical facilities has long been restricted, service members (and dependents) could (with varying degrees of availability) access such services locally. With this USSC decision and the subsequent "outlawing" of abortion in many states, even that limited availability will be more curtailed.

As this announcement approached some steps were being attempted to provide some amelioration.

(both following articles are long; expand or go to link to read)

House lawmakers demand standardized leave policies, financial support for service members seeking abortions​

By SVETLANA SHKOLNIKOVA STARS AND STRIPES • June 17, 2022

WASHINGTON — House lawmakers urged Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Friday to expand abortion access for service members and their families as the Supreme Court looks to overturn a landmark law preventing states from outlawing the procedure.

Reps. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., and Jason Crow, D-Colo., asked Austin and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to extend Army and Air Force leave policies accommodating abortion care across all the service branches, strengthen privacy protections and provide financial support for service members who need to travel to obtain access to an abortion.

“We are gravely concerned about service members’ reproductive privacy and health care rights, especially given the unique challenges that service members face, including for those who are stationed in states that are poised to ban or restrict abortion and potentially other reproductive care if the [Supreme Court] dismantles Roe v. Wade,” the lawmakers wrote in a letter signed by 79 other House members.

Twenty-six states are likely to move quickly to ban abortion if Roe v. Wade is allowed to fall, 13 of them — Arkansas, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming — have “trigger” laws in place that would immediately end abortion upon a Supreme Court ruling, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a pro-choice research organization that was once a part of Planned Parenthood.

Each of these states is home to military installations, with the largest concentration in Texas.

Lawmakers said service members are particularly vulnerable to restrictions on abortion rights because they already face hurdles when seeking out the procedure. Challenges include needing to request approval from their commander to take leave, traveling long distances when they are stationed in places where abortion is unavailable and lacking the funds to travel off base for care, they said.

Service members who have an abortion can also face retaliation from their commander or other troops if others find out they have had the procedure, lawmakers wrote. TRICARE, the military’s health insurance, only covers abortion when the mother's life is in danger or if pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.

“In a post-Roe world, service members stationed in states where abortion is banned or severely restricted will need additional leave, resources and financial support to facilitate travel to states where abortion is accessible,” lawmakers wrote. “The consequence of delays and challenges in accessing care across multiple states could mean that the service member is forced to carry a pregnancy against their will.”

Democratic members of the House Appropriations Committee moved this week to codify access to leave for abortion care into law, advancing a 2023 budget bill for the Pentagon that would prohibit the Defense Department from denying service members and civilian employees time off to obtain an abortion. The provision would also allow leave for their spouses or partners.

House lawmakers have pushed to shore up abortion rights for troops after a draft of the Supreme Court’s impending decision leaked last month. Speier and 81 other Democrats introduced a bill this month that would allow military medical treatment facilities to provide abortion services to service members.

The issue is also at the forefront in the Senate, where Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, made an impassioned plea for safeguarding women’s reproductive rights last week. Hirono co-sponsored legislation that mirrors the House bill.

“Service members have the right to control their own bodies no matter where they are stationed,” Hirono said during a meeting of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “It’s important to protect service members’ bodily autonomy. Who gets to decide what to do with her body, the woman or a bunch of politicians?”

Speier and Crow said the military must standardize leave policies set by the Army and Air Force, which enable service members to request leave for abortion without obtaining pre-approval from their commander or detailing the nature of the health care service that they plan to receive.

The lawmakers also want the Defense Department to offer subsidies and reimbursement for the cost of traveling off base, or to a different state, to obtain an abortion.

“Everyone, including members of our military and their families, should be free to make decisions about their futures and families, including the decision to have an abortion,” they wrote. “Limiting access to these services will negatively impact the morale, retention, overall health of the joint force and deeply harm the overall readiness of the armed forces.”

Access to abortion for members of the military expanded in Pentagon spending bill​

Service members based in Arizona, other states expected to ban abortions, would be granted leave when seeking abortions elsewhere
BY: JENNIFER SHUTT - JUNE 23, 2022 4:02 PM

WASHINGTON — Democrats in Congress are pushing to increase access to abortion for members of the military, concerned a U.S. Supreme Court decision that could end the constitutional right will harm troops.

The U.S. House’s annual funding bill for the Defense Department would require the Pentagon to provide leave to troops and civilian employees seeking abortions. The matter has become more pressing to Democrats, given that people seeking abortions off base and outside the military health care system will need to travel away from states that ban abortions.

Many of those states expected to prohibit or greatly limit abortions are home to military installations, including Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Tennessee and Texas.

In addition, abortion rights advocates say members of the military who want to terminate pregnancies should be able to ask for leave without fear of retaliation from a superior.

“Let’s be honest, we still have a sexual assault problem in this country, and we have one in the military,” said Rep. Betty McCollum, a Minnesota Democrat who chairs the Defense funding panel. “And why would we allow a commander to make such a personal health care decision (for) someone serving under their command?”

Maryland Republican Andy Harris tried to remove the leave provision from the Defense appropriations bill during the committee’s markup this week, arguing that commanding officers should have the ability to negotiate leave if there’s a scheduling conflict.

“This is interfering in the military in a way that this committee shouldn’t be doing,” Harris said before his amendment was rejected on a party-line vote. “I get the politics of it, but this bill is too important for this kind of politics.”

Bans on federal funding for abortion
Many Democratic lawmakers view providing broader abortion access to U.S. troops as necessary, with the U.S. Supreme Court likely poised to overturn the nationwide right to an abortion it established nearly 50 years ago and reaffirmed 30 years ago.

Currently, the military health care program, known as TRICARE, covers abortions only if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest, or if carrying the pregnancy to term would put the patient’s life at risk — a longtime federal policy.

In order to get approval for an abortion, a doctor must certify the pregnancy would end the patient’s life if carried to term, or “a physician must note in the patient’s medical record that it is their good faith belief, based on all available information, that the pregnancy was the result of an act of rape or incest.”

That TRICARE program not only covers military members’ health care, but often that of their spouses and children.

Any military member within the United States who wants to seek an abortion outside those circumstances must get leave and travel to a civilian clinic at their own expense. If a military doctor doesn’t believe a woman was raped, she must also travel if she decides to terminate the pregnancy.

Military members overseas can seek off-base abortion access if they’re in a country where terminating a pregnancy is legal and the health care system is safe, though that isn’t always the case.

Lory Manning, director of government operations at the Service Women’s Action Network and a retired captain in the U.S. Navy, said while she was stationed in Panama a younger officer needed two weeks of leave to return to the United States to access legal, safe abortion.

Manning said a more junior officer likely wouldn’t have been able to afford to travel if they were in similar circumstances, another problem for those stationed in states that will have new, restrictive abortion laws.

“The military has been grappling with tight restrictions on abortion since 1979, so they’ve worked out some of the problems. But the main problem is, how do some of the more junior people pay for it, particularly in states where there’s multiple trips to the clinic required by state law?” Manning said.

Hyde Amendment politics
Since the mid-1970s, government funding bills have barred the federal government from spending any money on abortions with limited exceptions for rape, incest or the person’s life.

Democrats in the House and Senate removed that restriction last year in their original government funding bills, but the so-called Hyde Amendment, named for former Republican Rep. Henry Hyde of Illinois, was added back into the final spending package at the insistence of Republicans.

Democrats in the U.S. House have once again removed the language from several of the annual government funding bills in an attempt to allow federal funds to go towards abortion services.

They argue that the prospect of the U.S. Supreme Court overturning the constitutional right to an abortion, a move that would let each state set its own laws, has changed the debate.

House Appropriations Chair Rosa DeLauro, a Connecticut Democrat, said that U.S. military members should be allowed to decide whether to keep or terminate a pregnancy in consultation with their doctors.

“However we feel about the decision of abortion, we should not deny a service member who has made the decision to serve our country the ability to take leave that she is entitled to for a safe and currently legal procedure,” DeLauro said.

The U.S. military, she said, has higher rates of unintended pregnancy than the civilian population, in part due to the frequency troops have to change providers and challenges obtaining contraception.

“Now is the time to empower all women to be able to make deeply personal life decisions without politicians inserting themselves into a doctor’s office,” DeLauro said. “If they, frankly, have the misfortune to be stationed in one of these 26 states, then the least we can do for them is to ensure they can take leave to obtain the medical care that they need.”

DeLauro’s comment was in reference to states where abortions will be greatly limited if the court ends the constitutional right to abortion.

California Rep. Ken Calvert, the top Republican on the Defense funding panel, argued against the provision, saying it was “unwarranted and unnecessary” since the military already has leave policies for medical purposes and mechanisms to appeal any denial of medical leave.

Calvert said he was concerned that if enacted, the policy would mean commanding officers “have to ask more questions about medical leave requests than already currently happens in practice.”

“The services can determine for themselves which leave policies are necessary to maintain readiness and don’t need Congress micromanaging those policies,” he said.

The change, Calvert warned, could prevent the bill from becoming law if Republicans in the Senate block the legislation over the leave requirement.

“Provisions like this are the surest way to prevent us from passing such a bill,” he said.

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee hasn’t released any of its government funding bills for the fiscal year set to begin Oct. 1, so it’s not yet clear whether they back House Democrats’ policy change.

Even if they do, Senate Republicans, who are needed to get past the legislative filibuster, could block it from becoming law when the process goes to conference later this year.

Abortion leave policies
The U.S. Army and Air Force updated their policies for abortion leave within the last year, preventing commanding officers from denying leave for that purpose. Soldiers or airmen seeking to travel to a civilian facility for the procedure should just have to say they need leave for a medical procedure.

“Given the time-sensitive nature of the procedure, pregnancy termination will not require unit commander pre-approval,” the Army policy states. “However, Soldiers will keep their commander notified of any expected absences and provide the commander any new physical profiles as soon as possible. The Soldier may do this without providing the specifics of the underlying procedure.”

The Air Force policy is similar, stating; “Given the time sensitive nature of the procedure, pregnancy termination should not be considered an elective procedure for the purpose of requiring unit commander pre-approval and coordination.”

But it adds that while “commanders do not need to approve of this procedure before it occurs, they will be informed of any aftercare plans post procedure based upon necessary physical profiles, while respecting the patient’s privacy to the extent practicable.”

Manning said she expects Democrats will try to apply that language to other branches of the military, including the Marine Corps and the Navy, when the annual defense policy bill comes to the floor. That legislation, referred to as the National Defense Authorization Act or NDAA, is separate from the annual defense funding bill.

Kelly Blanchard, president of Ibis Reproductive Health, which has spent years researching sexual and reproductive health care in the U.S. military, said rates of unintended pregnancy in the military are higher than for civilians.

“That is an indication of where sexual and reproductive health services need to be improved,” she said. “So that service members have access to the contraceptive methods that they want, to refillable supplies, and the full comprehensive set of sexual and reproductive health service.”

Ibis’ research has shown that U.S. military members “have experienced retaliation” for seeking abortions off base.

“We have a number of stories from folks about their commander telling other people, or the person who they had to ask for leave disclosing,” Blanchard said. “And then it becomes an issue of how people react to that and knowing that personal information.”

The policy language in the House Defense Appropriations bill that would prevent the military from denying leave for military member who want or need to get an abortion carries good intentions, she said.

“But there’s also concerns about confidentiality and how that would work in practice,” Blanchard said. “I just have some concerns based on what we’ve heard about confidentiality and how people would implement this without potentially being penalized, which we heard from folks who were really concerned about their careers.”

In order to avoid possible harm to their careers or reputation in the military, some military members who want, or need, to access abortion have “sourced medication abortion pills from online from global online services,” Blanchard said.

“Self managed abortion with pills is highly safe and effective even without a clinical support from a clinical provider,” Blanchard said. “But it’s also true that people should have the opportunity to access care with a clinical provider if they want and access to follow-up care and all the things they may need.”

‘Tremendous’ chaos predicted
Jackii Wang, legislative analyst for the National Women’s Law Center’s reproductive rights and health team, said the language in the House Defense spending bill is “a great first step,” though she noted service members will continue to face challenges even if it’s included in the final package.

“We know that after the Supreme Court decision comes down, there’s going to be a tremendous, tremendous amount of chaos across the country for millions of people. And that will include the over 400,000 women who serve in the armed forces and in the reserves,” Wang said.

There are several “unique” challenges service members and military families will face following the court’s decision, Wang said, including how to get leave and afford to travel if they want or need an abortion.

“After the Supreme Court dismantles Roe vs. Wade, they are going to be left with so few options,” Wang said. “And so many of them are junior service members, who don’t make a lot of money, who don’t have any resources to leave base.”

“They’re going to be stationed in places where they can’t get abortion care. They may face leave policies that are restrictive or retaliation,” Wang continued. “And the worst case scenario, which is very real, is that they can be forced to carry an unwanted pregnancy.”
 

dapaterson

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And what does this mean for CAF members and their families posted to the US?
 

rmc_wannabe

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Fine for CAF members, but what about their family members?
That is a a whole can of worms I hope that CDLS(W) is ready to address when it eventually gets cracked open.
What about posting refusals because of it - and career implications?
We already have situations where this happens. Talk to some of our LGBTQ2IA+ about how limited overseas postings or deployments can be due to the local attitudes, laws , or customs will have adverse results.... like persecution...or death.

As it stands, I have 2 members of my immediate family under the rainbow umbrella and 2 others who have reproductive systems that would be targeted under some of the State "Heartbeat" Laws in the lower 26. I would fully refuse an OUTCAN if my family wouldn't be guaranteed the same kind of rights and safety afforded here in Canada.
 

Blackadder1916

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And what does this mean for CAF members and their families posted to the US?

I hadn't thought about that aspect when I posted. Perhaps someone should ask the question to an appropriate authority . . . maybe one of these guys. (their phone numbers are listed in the Welcome Book)

CAF Health Services Group HQ Detachment Washington is a lodger unit within CDLS(W) and provides medical oversight to all U.S. OUTCAN personnel (both CDLS(W) and NORAD personnel). The Det is comprised of the following: the Canadian Forces Health Services Attaché (CFHSA - a CAF doctor), the Canadian Forces Medical Liaison Officer (CFMLO - a CAF doctor), the Staff Officer Health Administration (SO Health Admin - a Health Care Administrator) and the Health Services Coordinator (HS Coordinator - a Medical Technician). This team of four provides guidance to 700+ CAF personnel and their families regarding all aspects of health care and the administration of entitled benefits while in the USA.

 

dapaterson

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Except there are CAF OUTCAN all over the US, not just in Washington. A CAF doctor in DC does nothing for a CAF dependent in Texas, for example.

If ever there was a time for a Surg Gen to display anything remotely resembling leadership, this would be the time.

(These concerns are present for GAC as well...)
 

Jarnhamar

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rmc_wannabe said:
I would fully refuse an OUTCAN if my family wouldn't be guaranteed the same kind of rights and safety afforded here in Canada.

So you would refuse an OUTCAN posting to Jordan, Japan, the Bahamas, Brazil, Finland, Jamaica, and so on?
 

lenaitch

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That is a a whole can of worms I hope that CDLS(W) is ready to address when it eventually gets cracked open.

We already have situations where this happens. Talk to some of our LGBTQ2IA+ about how limited overseas postings or deployments can be due to the local attitudes, laws , or customs will have adverse results.... like persecution...or death.

As it stands, I have 2 members of my immediate family under the rainbow umbrella and 2 others who have reproductive systems that would be targeted under some of the State "Heartbeat" Laws in the lower 26. I would fully refuse an OUTCAN if my family wouldn't be guaranteed the same kind of rights and safety afforded here in Canada.
Currently, being LGBT(etc.) isn't illegal in the US (perhaps give it a few weeks given the way some states are talking). Should it be legitimate grounds to refuse a posting based on a speculative concern? Should a visible minority member be able to refuse a US posting based on the disproportionate 'attention' they might receive from law enforcement in some US locations?
 

Navy_Pete

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Is this kind of thing normally part of the OUTCAN screening for the family anyway? I would think not wanting someone in your family to go to jail or be murdered for their sexuality would be a reasonable reason to not want to screen clear.
 

rmc_wannabe

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So you would refuse an OUTCAN posting to Jordan, Japan, the Bahamas, Brazil, Finland, Jamaica, and so on?
Yes, Actually.

I'm a cis-het white dude... but I have a Trans daughter and a spouse who is very much not straight. My career is not my family's, especially if it has potentially life ending consequences because their very being is an affront to whatever ideological or religious theocracy thar governs the host nation; that includes our Southern neighbours.
 

Jarnhamar

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Yes, Actually.

I'm a cis-het white dude... but I have a Trans daughter and a spouse who is very much not straight. My career is not my family's, especially if it has potentially life ending consequences because their very being is an affront to whatever ideological or religious theocracy thar governs the host nation; that includes our Southern neighbours.

Neat. We've come a long way from CAF members being ordered to drop their kids off at a neighbours for 6 months etc..
 

Blackadder1916

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. . . A CAF doctor in DC does nothing for a CAF dependent in Texas, for example.

Nor would that CAF doctor do anything (clinical) for a dependent in DC . . . or at least that was the way it was. The medical det at CDLSW is (or was) primarily functioning as the medical admin/financial hub in the USA (there is/was a similar arrangement in Europe).

Channeling back some 30 years when I used to do this for a living, there are already regulations in place that provide for reimbursement of travel expenses if the required medical service is unavailable or sub-standard at the OutCan location.

10.8.03 - Entitlement
10.8.03(1) (Entitlement) A member to whom this section applies is entitled to the Preventive Medical Services Expenses, Health Care Expenses, Health Care Travel, and Medical and/or Dental Expense Advances benefits under the terms and conditions set out in FSD 38, 39, 41, and 42 respectively incurred on behalf of the following persons:
  1. a dependant who resides with the member at the post; or
  2. a dependent student; or
  3. a special dependant, if entitled to health care coverage under CBI 10.9.04(2)(a) - Medical coverage.
(TB, modified 1 March 2022)

10.8.03(2) (Member's responsibility) A member is responsible for the cost of medical travel within the geographical area of the member's post.


Even when we operated hospitals overseas, there were occasions when we were required to refer patients (military and dependent) to civilian facilities for care, usually local but sometimes farther afield, including across the Rhine in France. Some of those occasions (as I recall from a few instances of certifying the bills for payment) were for termination of pregnancy. I expect that even before this SCOTUS decision there were occasional challenges with obtaining abortion services for Canadians posted there.
 

rmc_wannabe

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Neat. We've come a long way from CAF members being ordered to drop their kids off at a neighbours for 6 months etc..
Firstly, that has and always will be piss poor leadership. I have called out many of my peers for pushing members to activate their Family Care Plan because of a 3 week exercise. Use your talents and personnel management skills to find a solution that doesn't adversely affect the member, or cause them to call in favours for this kind of petty shit.

With that, this stopped being a profession/vocation to most CAF members about halfway through Afghanistan; when we saw how quickly and easily pers were disposed of when they were no longer of use to the CAF. Risking life and limb, only to be cast aside like an old glove cemented it for everyone else watching. For all the DWDs and "we look after our people and their families..." speeches, everyone knows they're already looking for a person to fill your CFTPO/HRMS position before the ink isbdry on your release memo; or there's dry ice in the transfer case.

There are many, many CAF members that will walk the second "for the good of the Service" is on the table and it adversely affects their personal or family life. They're the ones that are going to be there for you when you go back to being Mr./Mrs./Xz. Bloggins.
 

SupersonicMax

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Nor would that CAF doctor do anything (clinical) for a dependent in DC . . . or at least that was the way it was. The medical det at CDLSW is (or was) primarily functioning as the medical admin/financial hub in the USA (there is/was a similar arrangement in Europe).

Channeling back some 30 years when I used to do this for a living, there are already regulations in place that provide for reimbursement of travel expenses if the required medical service is unavailable or sub-standard at the OutCan location.




Even when we operated hospitals overseas, there were occasions when we were required to refer patients (military and dependent) to civilian facilities for care, usually local but sometimes farther afield, including across the Rhine in France. Some of those occasions (as I recall from a few instances of certifying the bills for payment) were for termination of pregnancy. I expect that even before this SCOTUS decision there were occasional challenges with obtaining abortion services for Canadians posted there.
When you go on exchange in the US, you and your family is treated by US Military hospitals (for the most part) with some referrals in civilian clinics. I would expect Canadian families to be treated the same as American families for health care issues.
 

Blackadder1916

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When you go on exchange in the US, you and your family is treated by US Military hospitals (for the most part) with some referrals in civilian clinics. I would expect Canadian families to be treated the same as American families for health care issues.

I would hope that Canadian military families would be treated better than Americans for 'this' health care issue.

While both American and Canadian military pers will (usually) have abortion services provided by other than military medical treatment facilities (MTF), the difference is that American MTFs regardless of size and range of available specialists are precluded from providing any abortion related service (including pre and post procedure) by law. For Canadian MTFs, the restriction is probably based mainly on unavailability due to limit of specialties. If an American servicewoman (I started to write 'man and then 'duh') needed/requested an abortion, they would have to inform their commander of the pregnancy and depending on the time needed to get the procedure would have to request leave (chargeable to their annual entitlement). Any charges for the procedure as well as any travel expenses if an abortion provider was not in the local area would be the responsibility of the soldier. A Canadian servicewoman's abortion would be treated the same as any other medical procedure; the cost would be the responsibility of the CAF and any travel requirements would be considered as duty with any recovery time as sick leave.

Even when we operated our own hospitals, terminations of pregnancy were probably referred out in most circumstances; the numbers likely didn't justify having it in-house nor would military physicians be doing it often enough to maintain competency. However, back in the dark ages when I was in Cold Lake (1970s, when we had a CFH there providing dependent care), it did seem that there were D&Cs on the surgical schedule quite often.

But how far will Americans have to go (on their own dime) to obtain this service.

AFTER ROE V. WADE DECISION, HERE’S HOW FAR SOME MILITARY MEMBERS MUST TRAVEL FOR ABORTIONS​

By Matt White | June 25, 2022

Prior to Friday, a woman assigned to Keesler Air Force Base — the largest military facility in Mississippi — who sought an abortion would need to drive 90 miles to New Orleans, the nearest clinic, according to a major database of abortion providers.

Now it’s a 591-mile drive, each way, to Asheville, North Carolina — which now has the closest legal abortion clinic to Keesler — a round trip of about 20 hours.

And she is not alone. About half a million active-duty US military members now face far longer drives — some close to 600 miles farther — to receive legal abortion care after the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade on Friday, June 24. In all, about one-third of the US military’s total active-duty force and their families are stationed in two dozen states — mostly across the South and Southwest — where abortion is now illegal or likely soon will be. Prior to Friday, nearly all active-duty bases — particularly large ones — had a licensed abortion facility within an hour’s drive, often closer. Now drives of eight or more hours to a clinic — most likely in North Carolina or New Mexico — will be common.

For a woman assigned to US Central Command Headquarters at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida — or a man assigned there whose wife, girlfriend, daughter, or other close female relation becomes pregnant — the nearest clinic that offers legal abortion care is All Women’s Health Center of Tampa, just 6 miles from base. But that drive will soon be 577 miles, to Charlotte, North Carolina’s Family Reproductive Health clinic, should Florida officials follow through on promises to soon change state laws.

In Ohio, any woman who became pregnant on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base has been able to get an abortion 14 miles from the base. Soon, the same medical care will require a 387-mile drive to the Seneca Health Center just outside Buffalo, New York.

And for soldiers at Fort Hood, Texas — or the wives, daughters, girlfriends, or other female relations of soldiers there — who seek abortion services, the 64-mile drive to a clinic in Waco is now a 614-mile drive to Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Soldiers at many bases also will have to navigate mileage limits on local leave and pass restrictions. Many units impose “block leave” on members, limiting when members can take leave around a deployment or alert schedule. Many commanders also impose limits on mileage that troops can travel away from base on weekends and liberty passes, or even on leave for some rapidly deployable units.

Using a database of abortion providers, Coffee or Die Magazine calculated the distances that military members assigned to 15 major military installations have had to drive to reach abortion care, and the distances they must travel now.

In many cases, particularly across the heavily military South, driving distances to the closest abortion provider have jumped from a few dozen miles to over 300 miles, and in some cases close to 600 miles — one way — as calculated by Google Maps driving directions.

Major bases affected include (all distances are one way):

Joint Base San Antonio (calculated from Fort Sam Houston): Increase of 586 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider:13 miles, Planned Parenthood – South Texas Medical Center, San Antonio, Texas
  • Likely New Closest Provider:599 miles, Full Circle Health Center, Las Cruces, New Mexico
Fort Hood, Texas: Increase of 550 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider:64 miles, Audre Rapoport Abortion Services Center (Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas), Waco, Texas
  • Likely New Closest Provider:614 miles, Full Circle Health Center, Las Cruces, New Mexico
Fort Benning, Georgia: Increase of 370 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider:13 miles, Columbus Women’s Health, Columbus, Georgia
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 383 miles, Family Reproductive Health, Charlotte, North Carolina
Parris Island, South Carolina: Increase of 244 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider:43 miles, Savannah Medical Clinic, Savannah, Georgia
  • Likely New Closest Provider:287 miles, Wilmington Health Center (Planned Parenthood South Atlantic), Wilmington, North Carolina
Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri: Increase of 15 miles

  • Previous Closest Provider: 137 miles, Reproductive Health Services (Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri), St. Louis, Missouri
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 152 miles, Fairview Heights Health Center (Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri), Fairview Heights, Illinois
Keesler AFB, Mississippi: Increase of 501 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 90 miles, Women’s Health Care Center, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 591 miles, Asheville Health Center (Planned Parenthood South Atlantic), Asheville, North Carolina
Maxwell-Gunter AFB, Alabama: Increase of 359 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 4 miles, Reproductive Health Services of Montgomery, Montgomery, Alabama
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 363 miles, Asheville Health Center (Planned Parenthood South Atlantic), Asheville, North Carolina
Redstone Arsenal, Alabama (future home of US Space Command and major US Space Force units): Increase of 326 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 6 miles, Alabama Women’s Center for Reproductive Alternatives, Huntsville, Alabama
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 332 miles, Asheville Health Center (Planned Parenthood South Atlantic), Asheville, North Carolina
Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida: Increase of 363 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 14 miles, Planned Parenthood of Jacksonville, Jacksonville, Florida
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 377 miles, Family Reproductive Health, Charlotte, North Carolina
CENTCOM HQ/MacDill AFB, Tampa: Increase of 571 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 6 miles, All Women’s Health Center of Tampa, Tampa, Florida
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 577 miles, Family Reproductive Health, Charlotte, North Carolina
Iowa National Guard Joint Forces Headquarters, Johnston, Iowa: Increase of 194 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 16 miles, Rosenfield Health Center (Planned Parenthood North Central States), Des Moines, Iowa
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 210 miles, Rochester Health Center (Planned Parenthood North Central States) Rochester, Minnesota
F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming: No change
  • Previous and Present Closest Provider: 50 miles, Fort Collins (Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains) Fort Collins, Colorado
Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota: Increase of 202 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 284 miles, Red River Women’s Clinic, Fargo, North Dakota
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 486 miles, WE Health Clinic, Duluth, Minnesota
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio: Increase of 373 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 14 miles, Women’s Med Center of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 387 miles, Seneca Health Center (Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York), West Seneca, NY
Luke AFB, Arizona: Increase of 307 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 16 miles, Acacia Women’s Center, Phoenix
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 323 miles, FPA Women’s Health, El Cajon, California
Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho: Increase of 310 miles
  • Previous Closest Provider: 57 miles, Planned Parenthood – Meridian Health Center, Meridian, Idaho
  • Likely New Closest Provider: 367 miles, Bend Health Center (Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette), Bend, Oregon
In many of the cases listed above, the bases sit in one of 13 states with “trigger laws” on the books designed to instantly outlaw abortion on the day Roe v. Wade is overturned — which happened Friday morning — or that already had abortion bans in place that had survived court challenges.

Those trigger-law states include Texas, which has close to 175,000 active-duty military members at major installations like Joint Base San Antonio and Fort Hood, along with Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Oklahoma, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Tennessee.

In all, those states have a combined military active-duty population of 240,000, plus families.

An additional seven states have anti-abortion laws on the books that are expected to go into effect or be quickly re-enacted by state lawmakers. Those states include military-heavy South Carolina and Georgia, along with Alabama, Indiana, Ohio, and West Virginia — home, together, to an additional 125,000 military members, plus families. Georgia has about 70,000 active-duty members at major bases like Fort Benning, Fort Stewart, and Moody Air Force Base. South Carolina is home to about 18,000 active-duty troops with installations like Fort Jackson and Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island.

Finally, Florida and Arizona have 15-week abortion bans in place, which will now be law. Both states also have legislatures and governorships controlled by Republicans who have said they are likely to enact more restrictive laws in the near future. Florida is home to 107,000 active-duty members, with major centers in Pensacola, Eglin Air Force Base, Jacksonville, and Tampa.

Florida and Arizona together are home to 89,000 active-duty members.

If a woman is stationed in any of those states — or if their partner or a parent is — she will now need to travel across state lines, sometimes several times over, to reach a state where abortion is expected to remain legal.

Generally, women in Texas will need to reach New Mexico (depending on political outcomes in Kansas), while women across the South, including Florida, will need to drive to North Carolina. Across the Midwest, the nearest abortion provider may soon be in Illinois near St. Louis or Chicago, or as far east as Buffalo, New York. Those in the Mountain States, such as Idaho or Utah, will need to drive to western Oregon or Colorado.

Many states also require waiting periods. Along with the cost of travel, women may have to find lodging — and miss work — in the distant states.

Some significant increases in distances, however on some bases in Canada travel is necessary to get to an abortion provide such as Cold Lake where the nearest abortion clinic is in Edmonton.
 

Spencer100

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I knew I shouldn't open this thread.

Ok I would assume I member could get a flight home to attend in this matter. If you OUTCAN is near the border take a drive. The guy I met didn't even live in the States on his OUTCAN just drove over every morning.

That said there 700 members in the states. It this procedure required that much? Really can't see it. I expect more from people than sometimes I should.
 

Ostrozac

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The guy I met didn't even live in the States on his OUTCAN just drove over every morning.
Getting an exchange posting to 10 Mountain Division but living in Kingston is certainly an interesting flex, that’s for sure. I mean, I don’t like Watertown much either, but still…
 

Spencer100

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Getting an exchange posting to 10 Mountain Division but living in Kingston is certainly an interesting flex, that’s for sure. I mean, I don’t like Watertown much either, but still…
TACOM, Windsor to Warren MI. 20 minutes.
 
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