Ms. magazine  -- more than a magazine a movement

SIGN UP FOR MS. DIGEST, JOBS, NEWS AND ALERTS

FEMINIST WIRE NEWSBRIEFS

ABOUT
SEE CURRENT ISSUE
SHOP MS. STORE
MS. IN THE CLASSROOM
FEMINIST DAILY WIRE
FEMINIST RESOURCES
PRESS
JOBS AT MS.
READ BACK ISSUES
CONTACT
RSS (XML)
 
feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

April-28-10

Lawsuit Filed to Block Enforcement of New Oklahoma Ultrasound Law

The Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) filed a lawsuit yesterday to stop the enforcement of a new Oklahoma state law that extends existing ultrasound requirements for women seeking an abortion. The law in question requires medical professionals to show women the ultrasound image and give women a detailed description of the fetus.

The lawsuit argues that the new elements of the ultrasound requirement intrude upon patient privacy and, according to a CRR press release, "forces a woman to hear information that she may not want to hear and that may not be relevant to her medical care [and] also dangerously discounts her abilities to make healthy decisions about her own life by forcing her to hear information when she's objected."

The suit was filed by the CRR on behalf of Nova Health Systems, operators of a Tulsa, Oklahoma, clinic, and Dr. Larry Burns, an Oklahoma abortion provider. According to the Associated Press, the suit seeks a temporary restraining order that would block enforcement of the new law, which went into effect immediately following the veto override yesterday.

Early in March, the Oklahoma Supreme Court upheld the February ruling of a state District Court saying the law was unconstitutional on the basis that it violates state rules requiring legislation address only a single subject.

The bill was vetoed last Friday by state Governor Brad Henry, but then the Oklahoma state legislature overrode the veto this week. Governor Henry told CNN he rejected the bill because "State policymakers should never mandate that a citizen be forced to undergo any medical procedure against his or her will, especially when such a procedure could cause physical or mental trauma...To do so amounts to an unconstitutional invasion of privacy."

The Oklahoma state legislature also overrode the veto of a second anti-choice bill that prohibits women from suing doctors who intentionally withhold information or provide misleading or inaccurate information about a pregnancy, reported the Associated Press. Henry responded to the override votes and told the Associated Press, "both laws will be challenged and, in all likelihood, overturned by the courts as unconstitutional...I fear this entire exercise will ultimately be a waste of taxpayers' time and money."

In March 2010, the Oklahoma Supreme Court upheld the February ruling of a state District Court saying that an anti-choice law that included the ultrasound provision was unconstitutional on the basis that it violates state rules requiring legislation address only a single subject.

In addition to the two vetoes, Henry did sign one anti-choice bill into law Friday. This law requires abortion clinics to post signs in their facilities stating that women cannot be coerced to have an abortion, that a woman's voluntary consent is required to obtain the procedure, and that sex selective abortions are illegal, reported the New York Times. Henry also signed three anti-choice bills into law on April 5. The first of these bills outlaws sex-selective abortion, the second bill institutes a "conscience clause" allowing healthcare providers to refuse to participate in abortion procedures or refer patients to abortion providers, and the third bill puts restrictions on the administration of mifepristone (also known as RU-486) by requiring it be administered in the presence of a physician.

Media Resources: Center for Reproductive Rights Press Release 4/27/10; New York Times 4/27/10; CNN 4/27/10; Associated Press 4/27/10, 4/27/10; Feminist Daily Newswire 4/27/10, 3/31/10


© Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms. magazine

If you liked this story, consider making a tax-deductible donation to support Ms. magazine.

 

 

Send to a Friend
Their
Your
Comments
(optional)


More Feminist News

12/18/2014 New Jersey is Inching Closer to Mandatory Paid Sick Leave Statewide - The Assembly Budget Committee of the New Jersey state legislature approved a paid sick leave bill Monday by a 6-4 vote. If the bill is passed, New Jersey workers will earn one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. . . .
 
12/18/2014 American Apparel Hired Its First-Ever Woman Chief Executive to Replace Dov Charney - Six months after retail store American Apparel fired its chief executive and founder Dov Charney, the company has hired retail executive Paula Schneider as a replacement. Schneider, who will become American Apparel's first female chief executive, will take over the position as of January 5. Charney had led American Apparel since 1998 and became well-known from American Apparel's sexist advertising and from several sexual harassment lawsuits and sexual assault accusations against him by former employees. . . .
 
12/18/2014 Obama's Judicial Appointments Most Diverse in History - Congress came to a close on Tuesday night with the Senate confirmation of 12 new federal judges and 12 executive appointments - including Vivek Murthy as Surgeon General, Sarah Saldana as head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Tony Blinken as deputy Secretary of State. . . .