Mail-delivery services — and the U.S. Postal Service in particular — could become one of the nation’s largest abortion providers. On the one hand, there is potential here: an ad hoc federal subversion of state crackdowns. “You can’t protest every mailbox; you can’t create that type of regulatory regime” that the right wing has done around brick-and-mortar clinics, explains Amanda Allen, senior counsel at the Lawyering Project. On the other hand, with that potential comes uncharted legal territory and the possibility of even more criminalization and surveillance around abortion. There is also the question of whether or not the USPS, a beleaguered federal agency, is up to the challenge.
Public awareness of the safety and availability of medication abortion — mifepristone and misoprostol taken in sequence, which is commonly referred to together as the “abortion pill” and can be administered through ten weeks of pregnancy — has been on the rise in the United States.