Illinois Legislation Update: How to Promote the Cause of Life

The pro-life movement has various important and indispensable parts.  Pregnancy resource centers bring vital help to the crisis of unplanned pregnancy. In addition, our partners in pro-life work are assisting the cause through prayer, practical support, education, media, lobbying, and litigation. Each of these makes an important contribution to protecting and promoting a culture of life.

Caring Network has been supporting the cause of life since 1981. Our six Chicagoland pregnancy resource centers specialize in providing emotional support, spiritual counsel, and practical help to anyone facing an unplanned pregnancy. To learn more about our important work and ways you can get involved, contact us today!

Promoting the Pro-Life Cause Through Legislation

While many pro-life Christians have some awareness of legislative efforts at the federal level, we are often less informed on what is happening statewide.  Alexandra DeSanctis, writer for National Review and host of the For Life podcast says, “I think in terms of what comes before courts, and what actually goes into effect, what actually matters for the everyday American in terms of how they think about abortion, is policy at the state level… we have to think first and foremost of the micro-level, local and state policy first.”[1]

With that in mind, there are important updates regarding state legislation in Illinois.

Illinois Bill HB5506

Illinois bill HB5506, will be presented for a public hearing in Springfield in November.  This bill which is inappropriately named the Reproductive FACT (Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care, and Transparency) Act[2], will require pro-life pregnancy resource centers to “display a specified notice regarding planning services, prenatal care, and abortion.”  Specifically, this law would force pro-life centers to display the following message in a variety of ways and languages to their guests:

“Illinois has public programs that provide immediate free or low-cost access to comprehensive family planning services (including all FDA-approved methods of contraception), prenatal care, and abortion for eligible women. To determine whether you qualify, contact the county social services office at [insert the telephone number].”

Illinois bill HB5506 would require pregnancy resource centers to do the abortion industry’s dirty work.  Pregnancy centers that exist to care for women and their babies would be forced to inform clients and offer referrals to government-subsidized abortion facilities.  The law also gives the attorney general and other prosecutors the power to impose civil penalties.

This bill would attempt to force ministries like Caring Network to subvert our mission of protecting life and providing free pregnancy support, to instead, advertise for abortion.   This would directly violate the First Amendment’s clause that prohibits compelled speech, applicable to the States through the Fourteenth Amendment.  Thankfully, the US Supreme Court already struck down a similar law in California.[3]  No one should ever be compelled by the state to speech that is against their conscience.  And the state should never force anyone into abortion advocacy.

What Can You Do to Promote Pro-Life Legislation?

  • Pray: Nothing is more important than regular and sustained prayer.  Please pray for pro-life legislation and against anti-life legislation in Illinois.
  • Send a pro-life message to your elected leaders. Your representatives in Congress and state legislators also need to be educated on the harmful impact of anti-life legislation. Find your local representatives here.

If you’d like to further your efforts in promoting life, Caring Network is a great place to start. Participate in our vital work through prayer, volunteering, or partnership. Through your support, we are able to serve more women and save more lives. Thank you for joining us in the pro-life cause!

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[1] https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2020/july-web-only/abortion-supreme-court-john-roberts-states-legislature.html

[2] https://www.billtrack50.com/BillDetail/1205086

[3] https://www.scotusblog.com/2018/06/opinion-analysis-divided-court-rules-for-anti-abortion-pregnancy-centers-in-challenge-to-california-law/