Kentucky is the first state to completely ban abortion services as of April 13, 2022. Fortunately, one of the two remaining women’s reproductive healthcare offices filed for a temporary restraining order. And the U.S. District Judge Rebecca Grady Jennings complied, according to The Courier-Journal.
Planned Parenthood and EMW Women’s Surgical Center both went to federal court requested “emergency relief:”
‘The order comes eight days after Planned Parenthood and EMW Women’s Surgical Center individually sought emergency relief in federal court from House Bill 3, an “omnibus” abortion law with so many restrictions the clinics said it would be impossible to comply with it.’
Planned Parenthood filed the lawsuit which read:
‘[The law is] an unconstitutional ban on abortion in Kentucky.’
Governor Andy Beshear (D-KY) vetoed the bill, but the Kentucky Congress overrode him. By obtaining the federal court’s restraining order, the two clinics can continue operations. He said that it had no exemptions for rape or incest, so believed it would be unconstitutional.
The EMW, the state’s only health provider for women’s reproductive rights, attorneys said that if the law was to remain in place, it would harm patients mentally, physically, and emotionally:
‘[It would] force patients to remain pregnant against their will.’
Among its many restrictions on abortion it said:
‘HB 3 outlaws sending medication by mail used to terminate an early pregnancy, although that is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It requires the state Cabinet for Health and Family Services to create a new, extensive system to certify, register and monitor anyone who produces, ships, or dispenses the medication.’
The law also forced the state to list not only the names but also the addresses of those who wrote abortion-related prescriptions. Then, the website allowed people to post complaints anonymously:
‘HB 3 also bans abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy — current Kentucky law bans it after 20 weeks, puts new restrictions on abortions for girls under 18, including those seeking permission from a judge in certain circumstances, and requires fetal remains to be disposed of through cremation or burial.’
Beshear pointed out that this was an “unfunded mandate.” And implementing and staffing the new bill, HB 3, would cost Kentucky one million dollars.
Nonetheless, the Supreme Court could rule on a Mississippi case intended to overrule the 1973 law, Roe v. Wade. It legalized abortion across the country:
‘The Mississippi case bans abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy although the Supreme Court has allowed abortion to the point where a fetus is considered viable, generally around 24 weeks.’
Kentucky stuck the “abortion [at] 15 weeks” into the bill so that the state could have a law in place at the starting line when the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.
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