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Missouri abortion rights advocates race to get amendment on 2024 ballot

Charas Norell, 28, of south St. Louis, demonstrates in support of abortion rights on Monday, July 4, 2022, in downtown St. Louis. “My body belongs to me, it doesn’t belong to anyone else,” she said. “I’m not going to stand for someone else taking my rights away.”
Brian Munoz
St. Louis Public Radio
Missourians for Constitutional Freedom, a political action committee, is gathering signatures for an initiative petition that would legalize abortion up to the point of “fetal viability.”

Missourians for Constitutional Freedom, a coalition of statewide abortion rights groups, has until May 5 to gather more than 171,000 signatures to get a constitutional amendment on November’s ballot. The ballot initiative would legalize abortions up to the point of "fetal viability."

A coalition of Missouri abortion-rights groups launched a campaign last week to get a constitutional amendment to partially legalize abortion on the 2024 statewide ballot.

Missouri has one of the strictest abortion bans in the country.

Missourians for Constitutional Freedom — which has the support of Abortion Action Missouri, the ACLU of Missouri and Planned Parenthood affiliates in Kansas City and St. Louis — is gathering signatures for an initiative petition that would make the procedure legal up to “fetal viability.” That is typically between 20-25 weeks gestation.

“Missourians continue to show up and support this initiative because it's something our state really wants and frankly, we really need,” Tori Schafer, an attorney for the ACLU of Missouri, told KCUR’s Up To Date.

The campaign raised more than $1.1 million in donations on the first day after it launched. However, it still needs to raise millions more and gather over 171,000 signatures to qualify for the state’s November ballot.

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Claudia Brancart is an Up To Date producer for KCUR 89.3. She graduated from Pitzer College in Los Angeles where she majored in World Literature and Studio Art. You can reach her at claudiab@kcur.org.
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