'Unplanned Parenthood' professor's research maps out post-Roe abortion travel destinations

Myers has employed 25 undergraduate research assistants.

She also filed an amicus brief in favor of legal abortion in the landmark case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization.

A Vermont economics professor has constructed a database to map out the nearest abortion clinic available to women who live in states with abortion bans following the reversal of Roe v. Wade.

Middlebury College’s Caitlin Myers created the “Myers Abortion Facility Database,” which displays how legal changes to abortion access affect the abortion rate, birth rate, and changes to the number of available abortion centers.

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The current version of the map incorporates data from facilities that performed abortions going back from 2009 through May 2023. Myers launched the project in July 2021.

Myers looked at Planned Parenthood directories across the country to check the operation status of abortion clinics, and has also employed 25 undergraduate research assistants to call the facilities for more information.

In the landmark Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization Supreme Court case that overturned Roe v. Wade, Myers filed an amicus brief in favor of abortion and compiled research on the supposed importance of terminating a pregnancy for women’s health. Her work was also used to claim that abortion distances would place an undue burden on women who would have difficulties accessing an abortion clinic. 

After the Dobbs ruling in 2022, Myers performed an “Abortion Appointment Availability Survey” to examine the effects of “trigger bans” on abortion access. The project received funding from the Society of Family Planning (SFP), as well as Middlebury College.

SFP is an organization that advocates for “abortion and contraception practices and policies grounded in science and that center people whose access to care is constrained by systems of oppression.” 

[RELATED: ‘Pregnant? You still have a choice’: Abortion advocates target college women with mobile billboard campaign]

Myers has been teaching at Middlebury since 2005. In 2017, she offered a course called “Unplanned Parenthood,” in which students examined, “Why is it that, in an age of safe and effective contraception, roughly half of all pregnancies in the U.S. are unintended?”

Concerning her career in abortion economics, she has stated, “I came to it as a labor economist interested in gender differentials in labor market outcomes. You cannot study gender differences in labor market outcomes without studying the effects of family formation and childbearing on women’s careers, and you can’t study family formation and childbearing without studying reproductive policy.” 

Myers’ personal website features various studies she has conducted on topics such as the “power of abortion,” “reproductive policy,” and a “post-Roe world.”

Campus Reform reached out to all relevant parties for comment. This article will be updated accordingly. 

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