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New billboard welcomes drivers to Illinois 'where you can get a safe, legal abortion'

Abortion clinic erected the sign to fight against Missouri's proposal to tighten abortion laws

Matthew Busch/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A billboard promoting abortion greets travelers as they drive into the state of Illinois from Missouri.

"Welcome to Illinois, where you can get a safe, legal abortion," the billboard at Interstates 55 and 64 reads.

The Hope Clinic for Women said the message is an effort to fight back against Missouri's recent proposal to tighten its already strict abortion laws, Yahoo Lifestyle reported.

"There will be an avenue for access to abortion no matter what happens legislatively, and we just need to be more creative of getting our message out there to let our most vulnerable communities know that they still have choices," Alison Dreith, the clinic's communication manager, told Yahoo.

It posted the message last month following a February proposal by Missouri lawmakers that would ban most abortions.

The clinic, which sits just across the Illinois state line in Granite City, has performed abortions since 1974, according to its website.

What did Missouri lawmakers propose?

In February, lawmakers proposed a measure that would ban abortions after six weeks gestation, except for medical emergencies.

"Today, let us make known to citizens of this great state and every state in the nation that Missouri stands for the unborn," state Rep. Nick Schroer (R), who is sponsoring the legislation, said, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

There would be no exceptions in cases of rape or incest.

What are the state's current laws?

Currently, women in Missouri can receive a medical abortion up to 22 weeks.

Women seeking an abortion must also obtain informed consent 72 hours prior to the procedure.

Consent from a parent or guardian for those 17 and younger is required for an abortion.

What else?

Dreith told Yahoo that the clinic got the idea for the billboard from Progress Now Colorado, which placed a similar sign across from the border of Utah.

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