The following is a letter from pro-life legislators calling on the Administration of Governor Tony Evers and the Department of Health Services to shut down the state’s abortion clinics as part of Evers’ “Safer at Home” response to the Coronavirus.

April 2, 2020

Secretary-designee Andrea Palm Department of Health Services
1 West Wilson Street
Madison, Wisconsin 53703

Secretary-designee Palm,

The effects of COVID-19 and Wisconsin’s response to it have undoubtedly caused great anxiety across our state. As legislative representatives of the people of Wisconsin, we write you with great concern over a double standard imposed within DHS Emergency Order #12 (Shelter-in-Place) that contradicts reason and threatens the safety and wellbeing of Wisconsinites.

In the emergency order, you acknowledge that our state may not have the resources to combat COVID-19 in our communities, and that everyone in Wisconsin must “​take all possible actions to reduce further spread of COVID-19 to save lives.​ ”​ However, abortion clinics are continuing to operate in Wisconsin, needlessly exposing people to the potential to contract COVID-19 and using precious medical resources that are needed elsewhere to save Wisconsinites. ​It is deeply disturbing to find out that many lower risk businesses have been shuttered while you have given Wisconsin’s abortion clinics special dispensation to remain in operation.​ Several other states, including Maryland, Iowa, Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Alabama, Mississippi, Ohio, Indiana, and West Virginia have ordered standalone abortion facilities within their borders to close down as part of the prudent directive that all medical centers stop performing elective, non-essential surgeries and procedures to limit risk and reserve medical resources for COVID-19 response.

Doing everything reasonable and possible to slow the spread of COVID-19 in our communities must include fair implementation of orders to stop non-essential activities. The abortion industry is using medical supplies daily on elective and non-essential “surgeries”. Supplies like surgical masks and gloves, which will be in short supply should the infection rate of COVID-19 continue to spike. ​We must not allow abortion clinics to put profit ahead of the public welfare and continue with these elective surgical procedures which now are done at a greater risk to the patient as well as our community.​ ​Too often, abortions result in complications that lead to the emergency room and further drain our overstretched system.

Concerns have previously been raised regarding your actions and advocacy in support of Wisconsin’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood, which operates 3 of the 4 standalone abortion facilities in our state.​ It is, and should be, a basic expectation that these abortion centers close while Wisconsin is under a “Shelter-in-Place” order to assure our residents that you are not putting politics before their health and prioritizing Planned Parenthood’s bottom line at the expense of our citizens’ health. ​We therefore demand your immediate action to ensure a halt to the operation of abortion facilities in Wisconsin for the duration of the declared public health emergency.

Sincerely,

Senator André Jacque 1st Senate DistrictSenator Dave Craig 28th Senate District
Senator Alberta Darling 8th Senate DistrictSenator Scott Fitzgerald 13th Senate District
Senator Chris Kapenga 33rd Senate DistrictSenator Kathleen Bernier 23rd Senate District
Senator Devin LeMahieu 9th Senate DistrictSenator Howard Marklein 17th Senate District
Senator Steve Nass 11th Senate DistrictSenator Roger Roth 19th Senate District
Senator Duey Stroebel 20th Senate DistrictSenator Tom Tiffany 12th Senate District
Senator Van Wanggaard 21st Senate DistrictRepresentative Janel Brandtjen 22nd Assembly District
Representative Scott Allen 97th Assembly DistrictRepresentative Barbra Dittrich 38th Assembly District
Representative James Edming 87th Assembly DistrictRepresentative Rick Gundrum 58th Assembly District
Representative Cody Horlacher 33rd Assembly DistrictRepresentative Rob Hutton 13th Assembly District
Representative Bob Kulp 69th Assembly DistrictRepresentative Dave Murphy 56th Assembly District
Representative Jeffrey Mursau 36th Assembly DistrictRepresentative Adam Neylon 98th Assembly District
Representative John Nygren 89th Assembly DistrictRepresentative Tim Ramthun 59th Assembly District
Representative Joe Sanfelippo 15th Assembly DistrictRepresentative Michael Schraa 53rd Assembly District
Representative Jeremy Thiesfeldt 52nd Assembly DistrictRepresentative Ron Tusler 3rd Assembly District
Representative Chuck Wichgers 83rd Assembly District