The number of abortions performed in Illinois fell to a 37 year low in 2010, according to new data from the Illinois Department of Public Health.
While both abortion opponents and pro-choice advocates believe the decrease in abortions is a good thing, the groups disagree on why the state saw such a steep drop in unwanted pregnancies.
Bill Beckman of the Illinois Right To Life Committee told the Chicago Sun-Times that he has seen an increase in participation at anti-abortion rallies, and believes “the public mind-set of abortion is changing.”
Planned Parenthood’s Illinois President Carole Brite, however, believes increased knowledge about contraceptives could have something to do with it.
“I think more and more providers have become aware and knowledgeable of [contraceptive] methods and are recommending them to their patients,” Brite told the paper.
The AP reports that 41,859 abortions were reported in Illinois in 2010, down 9 percent from 2009.
According to the Sun-Times, the numbers are the state’s lowest since 1973, when abortion was legalized in the United States.