A North Dakota Judge has overturned a 2011 law that restricted drug-induced abortions yesterday, citing it as unconstitutional. East Central Judicial District Judge Wickham Corwin stated that, "I remain convinced that a woman's reproductive rights must be protected under the state constitution and must be recognized as fundamental," at the end of the three day civil trial.
The legislation, House Bill 1297, outlawed the use of medication for the intent of ending a pregnancy, despite this being a safe and common alternative to surgical abortions. The case was originally brought to court in July of 2011 by the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), representing the Red River Women's clinic, the only women's clinic in North Dakota currently providing abortion services.
Nancy Northrup, the president and CEO of The Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), said of the ban, "These efforts to keep North Dakota women from the best available medical care and deny them their right to make their own decisions about their pregnancies, their families, and their futures are not only disingenuous, but wholly unconstitutional."
Media Resources: Park Rapids Enterprise 4/19/13; Raw Story 4/19/13; San Francisco Chronicle 4/18/13
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. . . .