FARGO, ND — North Dakota’s only abortion clinic crosses the border into Minnesota.
after the United States Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last week.
That’s why the Fargo Clinic is heading to the Moorhead area. The clinic has been planning the move since the Supreme Court’s draft opinion leaked last month.
The Red River Women’s Clinic is now kicking into high gear, raising big bucks to complete the move in time before abortions become illegal in North Dakota a month from Tuesday.
“We cried, very upset. But, you know, the phone immediately rang. I know she didn’t know what was going on and called at the time, but it’s something that I will never forget,” clinic director Tammi said. Kromenaker. “Our plan is to provide abortions in North Dakota for as long as we legally can.”
After that, Kromenaker says they will cross state lines a few miles away to Moorhead, Minnesota, where abortion remains legal.
“If you asked a strategic consultant, they would say we should have moved to Minnesota a long time ago,” Kromenaker said. “There are far fewer burdens on providers, far fewer hurdles for patients to navigate.”
Kromenaker says the last few days will be tough, but they’ve also been overwhelmed with support from the clinic’s escorts, to raise nearly a million dollars for their move.
“There’s probably going to be fear, confusion, you know, ‘Can I even get an abortion? Is it okay for me, you know, to go get an abortion somewhere else?’ So it’s sad to think about all the information we’re going to have to give to our patients.”
The Twin Cities-based abortion fund “Our Justice” is feeling the same pressure. The organization provides Plan B and helps pay for abortions, travel and accommodation.
“It’s not enough to give money to a clinic to fund an abortion if the people we serve don’t know how to get from A to B,” said Shayla Walker of Our Justice.
With more than 1,000 abortion procedures a year, the Red River Women’s Clinic is concerned that changing the laws will reinforce barriers that already exist.
“We know there will be many more patients who will have to bear the burden of travel, and we will accommodate them as best we can, again, without compromising our values.”
For security reasons, the clinic is not revealing its exact new location in Minnesota. They say that in the past few months they have already had an influx of patients from South Dakota and Minnesota due to facility closures and staffing issues.