For the past 18 years, Alaska has tracked annual abortions in the state. The 1,206 reported in 2020 are the fewest ever recorded.
Between 2003 and 2009, there were around 1,860 abortions performed annually in Alaska. Those numbers began to steadily decline over the past decade. Since 2016, there has been about 1,255 abortions each year in Alaska. The drop is also reflected in national studies which show that abortion has plummeted by 24% since 2009, according to recent data from the CDC.
The reasons for the drop in Alaska are unclear, but live births and pregnancies have been decreasing since 2015. According to a new state report, the fertility rate among Alaska women dropped from 77.1 in 2015 to 67.9 in 2019. Teen birth rates have also dropped over that time. Fertility rates are based only on the number of live births overall. and do not factor in pregnancies that end in abortion, miscarriage, or death.
Greg Monrad is executive director of the Community Pregnancy Center, a pro-life pregnancy clinic in Anchorage. He was pleasantly surprised about the decreased abortion numbers but doesn’t really know how to explain them.
In 18 years, they have reported killing a total of 28,566 unborn Alaska babies.
“This last year, we’ve actually seen more people come into the center determined to have an abortion – that’s their plan,” he said. “To be totally honest, I’m shocked – very pleasantly shocked.”
On average, the CPC sees around 550 visitors a year. The vast majority are women, but they are starting to see more men who want to help their partners.
Monrad noted that it has become easier to talk about abortion and unborn life over the past few years, especially as pro-abortion activists become increasingly extreme in their positions.
“It actually causes people to pause and think,” he said. “It is so extreme now that people can no longer align themselves with that.”
The 2020 abortion numbers for Alaska are quietly posted each year on Alaska Department of Health & Social Service’s website under the title: “Induced Termination of Pregnancy.”
Of the 1,206 abortions last year, most were performed on mothers who were unmarried (75%), and nearly four in 10 abortions were paid for with state Medicaid funds.
Raw data for the annual abortion report is submitted by abortionists as required by law. In 18 years, they have reported killing a total of 28,566 unborn Alaska babies.
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Ten percent of all abortions in 2020 were performed on Alaska teens. As in past years, the bulk of abortions (712 or 57%) were on women between the ages of 20 and 29, and more than 54% of mothers had undergone at least one prior abortion.
In 2005, Alaska began requiring abortionists to provide informed consent to women before performing an abortion on them. The state created a website with basic medical information to help women understand the risks and alternatives to abortion, as well as how the procedures are performed.
Alaska law requires abortionists to discuss material described in the state website before performing an abortion. The most recent report, however, indicates that this information was not requested by 99.1% of women and just 13% received a copy of the website material.
While there has been a shift in pro-life attitudes over the years, Monrad said there is much work to be done. He noted that there are now 12 pro-life pregnancy centers across the state, and he encouraged Alaskans to find out more about them.
“Tell people about it, refer people, bring them here,” he said. “See what you are called to do about this. It may be talking to your children and people in your sphere of influence, or maybe it is volunteering. We are volunteer driven. Then there is the financial and prayer support. We are all nonprofits. None of us get federal funding.”
- Click here to view a list of pro-life pregnancy centers from across Alaska.