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Colorado: Did You Know?

Did you know Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter approved legislation providing important information for sexual assault victims in hospitals?

On March 15, 2007, then-Gov. Bill Ritter signed a bill into law that requires Colorado hospitals to provide sexual assault survivors information about emergency contraception (EC) in emergency rooms.

The law requires Colorado hospitals to amend existing protocols to include informing sexual assault victims about the proper use and availability of EC as a means of preventing pregnancy.

This was the fifth attempt to create the law since 2003.  The bill had either died in the legislature or had been vetoed by former Gov. Bill Owens.  The bill’s approval marked the first pro-choice law signed into law in Colorado since 1999.

EC is safe, effective, and simple to use, and it is not associated with any serious or harmful side effects.  No specific medical conditions preclude a woman's use of EC.  In fact, the only contraindication to EC is pregnancy — not because EC can harm a woman or her pregnancy, but because EC will not work once pregnancy begins.

S.B. 60, 66th Gen. Assem., 1st Sess. (Colo. 2007) (codified as Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-3-110); April M. Washington, Emergency Contraception Measure Becomes Law, Rocky Mountain News, Mar. 16, 2007; Jeri Clausing, Rape Victims Must Now be Told Options,, Mar. 16, 2007.

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