A date has been set for the case against an anti-abortion law that could shut down the last abortion clinic in Mississippi. In an order released on Friday, U.S. District Judge Daniel P. Jordan III scheduled jury selection in the case to begin March 3, 2014.
In April, U.S. Judge Jordan extended a temporary injunction that prevented the state from closing the clinic as it tried to come into compliance with a 2012 law requiring all doctors who perform abortions at the clinic to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. The injunction was extended until the constitutionality of the law can be determined in a current pending lawsuit against the state.
So far, no hospital within 30 miles of the clinic has granted admitting privileges to any of the doctors. One rejection letter stated that the clinic "is inconsistent with this hospital's policies and practices as concerns abortion and, in particular, elective abortions... The nature of your proposed medical practice would lead to both an internal and external disruption of the hospital's function and business within this community."
Media Resources: Associated Press 8/16/2013; Feminist Newswire 4/16/2013, 11/29/2012
10/31/2014 Federal Judge Exempts Another Catholic University from Birth Control Coverage - A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Ave Maria University, a Catholic university in Florida, does not have to comply with federal rules meant to ensure that covered employees can exercise their right to obtain birth control at no cost.
The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance. . . .
10/31/2014 Women of Color in Tennessee Are United in Opposition to Amendment 1 - Just days before the general election in Tennessee, a coalition of community leaders, clergy, and advocates led a press conference encouraging women of color to vote no on Amendment 1, a dangerous and far-reaching measure on the state's ballot.
SisterReach, a grassroots organization focused on "empowering, organizing, and mobilizing women and girls in the community around their reproductive and sexual health to make informed decisions about themselves," organized the press conference "to call attention to the unique concerns Black and poor communities throughout Shelby County and across the state of Tennessee face on a daily basis" and to emphasize how the upcoming election "could further limit [black women's] reproductive, economic, political, and social autonomy."
"We assemble today to impress upon black women and women of color, many of whom are heads of households, to get out and vote," said SisterReacher Founder and CEO Cherisse Scott at the event.
SisterReach has been educating voters about the particularly dangerous impact of Amendment 1 on women of color. . . .
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. . . .