Michigan hotel offering free accommodations for women traveling for abortion

A number of states have passed abortion restrictions in recent months.

June 10, 2019, 5:11 AM

A hotel in small-town Michigan is offering free accommodation to any woman traveling to the state to have an abortion.

Shelley O'Brien, manager of The Yale Hotel in the tiny town of Yale, Michigan, made the offer in a post on the hotel's official Facebook page last month, following a spate of sweeping abortion bans passed in a number of states.

"Dear sisters that live in Alabama, Ohio, Georgia, Arkansas, Missouri, or any of the other states that follow with similar laws restricting access, we cannot do anything about the way you are being treated in your home-state," O'Brien wrote. "But, if you can make it to Michigan, we will support you with several nights lodging, and transportation to and from your appointment."

The Facebook post has been shared more than 3,000 times.

O'Brien later added an update to the May 16 post, saying she's received telephone numbers of people willing to help drive women to the hotel, which is located about 65 miles north of Detroit.

"We've got some amazing people in our village," she wrote. "We've got your backs."

O'Brien did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment Monday morning.

More than 350 pieces of legislation that would restrict abortion access have been introduced in states across the country this year, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive rights research group that was initially started as part of Planned Parenthood, but officially separated in 2007 and has been operating independently ever since.

So far in 2019, 17 bans on abortion have been signed in 10 states -- but none have gone into effect because they are all facing a legal challenge or have delayed starts. For now, abortion remains legal in every state.

Last month, Michigan's Republican-controlled House of Representatives and Senate both voted to ban second-trimester abortion procedures and make it a felony for doctors to perform them, except to save a woman's life.

But Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, has vowed to veto any legislation that restricts abortion access.

ABC News' Meghan Keneally contributed to this report.

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