11/9: This article has been updated to include statements from University President Santa Ono and Michigan Medicine.
Michigan voters have approved Proposal 3, also known as Reproductive Freedom For All, with 54% voting in support and 46% of votes counted, according to NBC News.
Proposal 3 is a constitutional amendment that enshrines the right to abortion, birth control and other forms of reproductive healthcare in the Michigan Constitution. The initiative gathered a record-breaking 753,000 signatures in its support, of which the Board of State Canvassers estimates around 596,000 were valid. The proposal was initially kept off the ballot after the two Democrats and two Republicans on the board split the vote on whether to certify the initiative. Following an appeal from Reproductive Freedom For All, the Michigan Supreme Court ruled it would appear on the ballot.
The amendment repeals Michigan’s 1931 abortion ban that criminalizes all abortions except to save the life of the pregnant person. While currently blocked by a preliminary injunction following a lawsuit from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, the overturning of Roe v. Wade opened up the possibility of its enforcement.
In an interview with The Michigan Daily, Nursing senior Linda Camp said she was excited to vote yes on Proposal 3 this Election Day.
“I voted yes for most of the proposals, especially on the one about abortion rights,” Camp said. “I think it’s important to protect women’s reproductive rights. Even if you might not agree with it based on religious views, I don’t think you should force your views into anyone else. I think it’s important, especially going into nursing and being in healthcare, to fight for those reproductive rights.”
Following the announcement of its approval, University President Santa Ono said the amendment will ensure access to healthcare and medical education at the University of Michigan.
“The health, safety and well-being of the members of our community remain our highest priority, and we remain committed to providing safe, high-quality and compassionate care across all reproductive health needs, including abortion care,” Ono said.
Michigan Medicine CEO Marschall Runge similarly praised the passage of Proposal 3 for resolving confusion about the state of abortion care in Michigan and cementing legal access to reproductive healthcare.
“In the months since the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision, our patients faced uncertainty about whether they would be able to continue to turn to University of Michigan Health for all of their reproductive health care needs,” Runge said. “With the passage of Proposal 3 we can now assure all people who need our services that we will be there for them.”
The amendment will take effect in 45 days.
Daily Staff Reporter Samantha Rich can be reached at email@example.com.
Daily Staff Reporter Sneha Dhandapani contributed to the reporting of this article.