In March 1970, Hawaii repealed the old restrictive abortion laws and became the first state to make legal abortion available. This was almost 3 years before the Roe v. Wade case (January 22, 1973), in which the US Supreme Court ruled that abortion should be legal for all American women.
By being the first state to decriminalize abortion, progressive Hawaii played an important role in the history of abortion rights in the US.
But even now that long ago change is important, because if Roe v. Wade is overturned, we in Hawaii may go back to the original 1970 law.
The information in this section of the website was primarily based upon Abortion Politics: The Hawaii Experience written by Patricia G. Steinhoff and Milton Diamond. We would like to thank Dr. Steinhoff and Dr. Diamond for their kind cooperation to this project.
Dr. M. Diamond(c) Interaction Stock
PRE 1970: WHEN ABORTION WAS ILLEGAL
HOW DID HAWAII BECOME THE FIRST STATE TO REPEAL THE OLD ABORTION LAWS?
THE NEW LAW AND ITS IMPACT