Serves as a warning sign of more bad rulings on access to abortion to come.
WASHINGTON — Today, the Supreme Court allowed a harmful Kentucky abortion law to take effect that will force providers to show and describe an ultrasound to patients, even if patients don’t want to hear or see the results, even if they are trying to turn away or cover their ears. This blow to abortion access comes only months before the court hears oral arguments in a major Louisiana abortion case — one that has the potential to render Roe meaningless, and signals a troubling road ahead for the fight to preserve abortion access across the country.
Signed into law by Governor Matt Bevin, the Kentucky law has no basis in medicine or science, and only serves to stigmatize and shame people for seeking an abortion. In fact, the American Medical Association, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the American Public Health Association, as well as more than 130 leading biomedical ethicists have condemned this law. Today’s court decision also comes just one day before reproductive rights champion Andy Beshear is sworn in as the new governor of Kentucky. Bevin lost last month’s election by centering his campaign on an anti-abortion agenda.
Statement from Alexis McGill Johnson, Acting President and CEO, Planned Parenthood Action Fund:
“This law is cruel, and serves no purpose except to shame patients for seeking health care. By allowing this harmful restriction to go into effect, the Supreme Court is giving politicians across this country a green light to not just restrict access to abortion, but to maliciously punish patients who try to access abortion. Patients deserve care and compassion, not humiliation, when they turn to a medical provider for care. With the courts chipping away at abortion access, we need politicians to step up to protect our rights and freedoms against these unconstitutional laws like never before. We will not stop fighting for the patients across the country who need care, or to protect them from cruel laws such as these. The fight to protect abortion access is happening on all fronts and we will never stop working, along with our partners, until every person can access the health care they deserve, without shame and without stigma, no matter what.”
Statement from Jennifer Allen, CEO, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Indiana and Kentucky:
"The Trump administration has politicized our courts and interfered in private medical decisions between patients and providers. This law shows the true motivation, which is to make abortion more difficult to access for pregnant Kentuckians — in this case, by forcing a medically unnecessary process on them. This law makes no exceptions in cases of rape, incest, or for people who decide to end a pregnancy after a prenatal diagnosis. Access to abortion is hanging by a thread and this law shows us just how fragile our rights and freedoms really are. This type of law is the opposite of care, it is an abusive and shameful act.”
Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational and electoral activity, including grassroots organizing, legislative advocacy, and voter education.
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Indiana and Kentucky (PPAIK) is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky (PPINK). The advocacy portion of PPINK engages in educational and electoral activity, including voter education, grassroots organizing, and legislative advocacy.