Wednesday, April 11, 2018
Reproductive Rights Advocates Challenge Dozens Of Mississippi Abortion Restrictions
NPR News (Apr. 9, 2018): Reproductive Rights Advocates Challenge Dozens Of Mississippi Abortion Restrictions, by Sarah McCamon
Abortion rights advocates with the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) and the Mississippi Center for Justice are challenging dozens of Mississippi's abortion restrictions in federal court. The state's Republican governor, Phil Bryant, recently signed the most restrictive abortion law in the country, banning abortion after 15 weeks gestation.
Last month, in response to a suit from CRR, a judge quickly moved to temporarily block the 15-week abortion ban in Mississippi.
Among the restrictions named in the new suit are a 24-hour waiting period for women seeking an abortion; a ban on physicians using telemedicine to provide abortion consultation or dispense medication abortions; and rules known as "TRAP" laws that abortion-rights attorneys and the U.S. Supreme Court say place unnecessarily cumbersome health and safety regulations on facilities that provide abortions. In 2016, the Supreme Court struck down similar rules in Texas in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt.
The suit's lead plaintiff is Jackson Women's Health Organization, the only clinic providing abortions in Mississippi.
Nancy Northup, CRR President & CEO, said she's hopeful the challenge to Mississippi's longstanding 24-hour-waiting period could set up an opportunity to revisit laws surrounding similar requirements, which have been upheld by the Supreme Court in the past, as in Planned Parenthood v. Casey.