Texas Abortion Providers File Emergency Application with US Supreme Court
Texas abortion providers filed an emergency application with the U.S. Supreme Court yesterday seeking to reinstate an injunction that blocked the application of a state provision requiring doctors who provide abortions to obtain hospital admitting privileges.
U.S. District Court Judge Lee Yeakel ruled on October 28 that the Texas TRAP law was unconstitutional and barred its application. The state immediately appealed to the Fifth Circuit and requested a stay of Judge Yeakel's decision in order to allow the law to go forward. A three-judge panel granted the state's request on Thursday, setting the law into effect. As a direct result, 12 abortion clinics were forced to close in the state, and already, over a hundred women have had appointments cancelled.
"Right now, women in vast swaths of Texas are being turned away at clinic doors because of a bogus law that attempts to do underhandedly what states cannot do directly -- block women from accessing abortion services," said Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights, one of the organizations representing the Texas clinics. "We now look to the Supreme Court to protect women's access to these essential health care services while we fight this critical court battle."
8/31/2015 Chicago Activists Continue Hunger Strike to Save Predominately Black Public High School - Chicago residents have entered the second week of their hunger strike protesting the closure of Dyett High School, in the predominately African-American Bronzeville neighborhood located on the South Side of Chicago.
Parents and community members are calling on the Chicago Board of Education to keep Dyett - the only open-enrollment, neighborhood school in its area - open and accept a community plan to revitalize the school with a focus on science and green technology. . . .
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .