DENVER (KDVR) — The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment says there has been an uptick in the number of women from out of state seeking abortions in Colorado.

In 2021, 11,580 women had abortions in Colorado, and 13.6% of them were from out of state. That’s a 3% increase from 2019. The majority were from states with restrictive laws.

The Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights, or COLOR, is one of the organizations that work for reproductive justice in Colorado.

“We have been preparing for this moment. I think it came a little bit sooner than we thought it would,” said Dusti Gurule, COLOR’s president and CEO.

Underserved communities and people of color are expected to be disproportionately impacted by expected changes to the nation’s abortion laws. Language barriers and costs are some of the issues.

“This preliminary ruling was really telling that our work is going to get harder and more difficult, and we are ready for the fight, and we’ve been preparing for this,” Gurule added.

One of COLOR’s goals is to help people like Gina Millan. Because of a language barrier, she took a pill that unintentionally aborted her fetus when she went to seek help for bleeding 16 years ago.  

“As Latinas we are more exposed to make mistakes because we don’t understand exactly what happens with our bodies,” Millan said.

As COLOR’s community organizer, Millan now tries to help others better understand health concerns and choices in the LatinX community in Colorado.

She expects even more women will come here from other states. How clinics plan to deal with the influx is not yet clear.