Arkansas’ 18-week abortion ban is still coming under attack by abortion advocates after the state attorney general filed an appeal to a preliminary injunction blocking the pro-life law, along with two others.
According to Fox 24, Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge’s office filed an appeal of Federal Judge Kristine Baker’s preliminary injunction, which was issued in August. Last week, the American Civil Liberties Union, which represents Planned Parenthood Federation of America, responded, asking the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to keep the ban blocking the abortion laws in effect. There are three Arkansas laws restricting abortion that are on the line with this lawsuit. The first prohibits abortion after 18 weeks, the second requires that abortionists be board-certified or board-eligible in obstetrics and gynecology, and the third prevents eugenic abortion due to a diagnosis of Down syndrome.
Rutledge said these laws would protect “patient health and safety from ill-trained abortion practitioners and risky abortion practices, safeguarding medical ethics, and preventing eugenics.”
After the bill was signed into law, Planned Parenthood sued the state, as did Little Rock Family Planning Services. A 14-day temporary restraining order was issued by the court and when that expired, the federal district court issued the preliminary injunction to block the law.
“These extreme bans and restrictions would have decimated abortion access in Arkansas, so we’re relieved the court has again blocked them from taking effect,” Holly Dickson, legal director and interim executive director of the ACLU of Arkansas said at the time.
If the Appeals Court rules in favor of the state, non-compliant abortion facilities will close and there will be one remaining non-surgical abortion facility left in Arkansas.
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