Federal Appeals Court Reinstates CPC Regulation in New York City
A federal appeals court reinstated a portion of a 2011 New York City law that regulates Crisis Pregnancy Centers, known as CPCs or fake clinics. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruling means that CPCs operating in New York City must now disclose whether or not a licensed medical professional works on-site at the facility.
To comply with the law, CPCs must post the disclosure in English and Spanish at their entrances and in their waiting rooms. Disclosures must also appear on advertisements and be made orally, either in-person to potential clients or during telephone conversations with potential clients.
"A pregnant woman deserves and has the right to know whether the person posing as her medical provider is actually just an anti-choice activist," said NARAL Pro-Choice New York President Andrea Miller. "We look forward to the City moving forward to impelement this important protection."
A lower court had temporarily blocked enforcement of the 2011 law, finding that it was "unconstitutionally vague." Overturning that decision, Judge Rosemary Pooler wrote: "The Status Disclosure is the least restrictive means to ensure that a woman is aware of whether or not a particular pregnancy services center has a licensed medical provider at the time that she first interacts with it. Such a law is required to ensure that women have prompt access to the type of care they seek."
The Second Circuit did not reinstate the New York City law in its entirety. CPCs in New York City will still not be required to disclose whether they provide referrals for emergency contraception, abortions, or prenatal care. The court also ruled that the City could not require CPCs to disclose that "the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene encourages women whoa re or who may be pregnant to consult with a licensed provider."
Media Resources: The Evergreen Association, Inc. v. City of New York; NARAL Pro-Choice New York Press Release 1/17/14; RH Reality Check 3/6/2011, 1/20/2014
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. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .