Washington, DC – Amidst a resurgence of the coronavirus pandemic in the United States and nationwide calls for racial justice, the United States Supreme Court handed down an important ruling that defends the right to abortion in the United States. The law in question before the Supreme Court was a Louisiana law designed to close clinics by imposing costly, burdensome, and medically unnecessary requirements—such as having admitting privileges at nearby hospitals.
“We are pleased with today’s ruling and relieved that the people of Louisiana and the rest of the United States will continue to have access to abortion care,” said senior attorney Fabiola Carrión. “As we stated in our amicus brief in this case, laws that seek to add additional barriers to abortion care disproportionately impact low-income people, people of color, and the LGBTQ community. It is good news that the Supreme Court has once again ruled that admitting privilege laws are unconstitutional and that the burdens were undue, but we cannot be complacent. Given that the law at issue is identical to a Texas law that it struck down in 2016 in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, this decision is the correct outcome.”
National Health Law Program Executive Director Elizabeth G. Taylor also expressed relief at today’s ruling. “The recognition by the Chief Justice of the need for respect of precedent to the even-handed administration of the law is tremendously significant. At the same time, there remains uphill work to expand access to abortion care. Even if admitting privilege laws are unconstitutional, hundreds of other deceptive state laws continue to make abortion inaccessible. And for decades, the Hyde Amendment has made abortion economically inaccessible for millions of people. We are rapidly approaching a reality where access to abortion is restricted to all but the wealthiest.”
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