Illinois Parental Notification Law Reaches State Supreme Court
Arguments began yesterday over a 1995 Illinois state law requiring anyone 17 years or younger to notify a parent before seeking an abortion. The 17 year old law has yet to be enforced because of a string of multiple lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the law.
Medical professionals who are represented by the ACLU are challenging the law by arguing that it violates Illinois' constitutional right to be free from gender discrimination and that the law is an invasion of privacy. The state defense supporting the bill argued that according to Illinois legal precedent there is not enough evidence to support a new legal case.
Lorie Chaiten, one of the ACLU lawyers challenging the law, told the Supreme Court that through the parental notification law "The state imposes harmful restrictions on those who seek abortions that it does not impose on those who choose to carry their pregnancies to term." Chaiten told reporters after the hearing "If the state can come up with a justification for putting young women in harm's way as this law does, then let them try to do so...But don't just simply say, 'That U.S. Supreme Court case from 1981 answers the question,' because it doesn't for us."
Media Resources: Huffington Post 9/20/12; RH Reality Check 9/20/12; San-Francisco Gate 9/20/12
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .