On Monday, a Texas judge denied Planned Parenthood's request for a temporary restraining order against enforcing a new measure that prevents the organization from receiving state funding for cancer screenings and well-woman visits. A hearing in a lawsuit regarding the funding restrictions is scheduled for mid-January. As a result, almost 50,000 poor women in Texas will be forced to find new doctors or pay for services at Planned Parenthood out of pocket.
The judge allowed the new law restructuring the Women's Health Program to go into effect Tuesday. The new guidelines prevent organizations affiliated with abortion providers from receiving state funding as part of the Women's Health Program. Planned Parenthood has filed several lawsuits trying to have their well-woman funding from the program reinstated.
Ken S. Lambrecht, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas, told reporters "It is shocking that once again Texas officials are letting politics jeopardize health care access for women. ...This case isn't about Planned Parenthood -- it's about women like Marcy Balquinta who rely on us for basic, preventive health care."
Media Resources: CNN 1/1/2013; New York Daily News 1/1/2013; Houston Chronicle 12/31/2012; Feminist Newswire 11/2/2012
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. The court's decision denied their request to temporarily block the legislation pending a final ruling on its constitutionality, rubber stamping the efforts of Oklahoma politicians to force doctors to use an outdated protocol for administering a medication abortion using the drug mifepristone - one that the medical community and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have rejected in favor of a new standard of care that calls for a significantly lower dosage. . . .
10/29/2014 North Dakota Supreme Court Upholds Abortion Restrictions - The North Dakota Supreme Court yesterday upheld a set of misguided restrictions on medication abortion, allowing what is effectively a ban on early, non-surgical abortions in the state to go into effect immediately.
The decision overturned a lower court order finding the law, known as HB 1297, unconstitutional and permanently blocking its enforcement. . . .
10/29/2014 Georgia Court Refuses to Recognize 40K Voter Registrations From Primarily People of Color and Young People - A state court judge on Tuesday refused to order the Georgia Secretary of State to add some 40,000 voters to the voter rolls, potentially disenfranchising thousands of African Americans and other people of color in the state.
Judge Christopher Brasher of the Fulton County Superior Court denied a petition from the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (LCCR), the New Georgia Project and the Georgia branch of the NAACP asking the court to force Secretary of State Brian Kemp (R) to process an estimated 40,000 "missing" voter registrations.
More than 100,000 voters were registered by the three groups, but about a third of those registered never made the rolls. . . .