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Planned Parenthood requested urgent intervention to allow its case to go forward in the trial court 

AUSTIN — Today, the Texas Supreme Court denied an emergency request to allow Planned Parenthood’s ongoing challenge to Texas’s six-week abortion ban, S.B. 8, to continue. All state-court challenges to S.B. 8, including Planned Parenthood’s lawsuit against Texas Right to Life (TRTL), have been stayed indefinitely by the Texas Multidistrict Litigation Panel. Now, Planned Parenthood’s challenge to the unconstitutional law — which has been scheduled for a summary-judgment hearing on October 13th — will likely not move forward.

S.B. 8 has been in place for 34 days, depriving millions of Texans of their constitutional right to abortion. Since then, the overwhelming majority of abortion patients have needed to leave the state for care or be forced to continue a pregnancy to term against their will. This is the direct result of the U.S. Supreme Court’s refusal to follow 50 years of precedent, allowing the first six-week abortion ban in the country to take effect. 

Statement from Helene Krasnoff, vice president for public policy litigation and law, Planned Parenthood Federation of America: 

“The Texas Supreme Court’s decision to allow the stay to remain in effect is extremely disappointing and will likely deprive Planned Parenthood of its day in court, once again. Texas Right to Life and others who have championed this cruel and unconstitutional law have for more than 30 days now used every procedural trick possible to deprive millions of Texans of their constitutional rights to abortion. This must stop. The courts must protect Texans’ right to access safe, legal abortion, and Planned Parenthood will continue to fight for our patients in all possible venues.”

On the eve of a temporary-injunction hearing, Texas Right to Life asked the Texas Multidistrict Litigation Panel to transfer the case, along with other pending challenges to S.B. 8 in state court. Texas Right to Life also requested for the Panel to immediately halt all trial-court proceedings, including cancelling the temporary-injunction hearing. The Panel granted the request to stay on September 23. On September 29, Planned Parenthood asked the Texas Supreme Court to lift the stay, so further action can resume in the trial court, including a hearing on Planned Parenthood’s motion for summary judgment, which is scheduled for October 13. The court denied that request today.

Planned Parenthood and its litigating partners have also asked the U.S. Supreme Court to reconsider intervention in the federal case brought by abortion providers, funds, and supporters, which won’t be heard by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals until December at the earliest. On October 1, a federal district court heard arguments on the request of the U.S. Department of Justice to block a S.B. 8 and a ruling could come on that request at any time. 

Since S.B. 8 took effect on September 1, Planned Parenthood affiliates across the country — from Texas neighbors Colorado, New Mexico, and Oklahoma all the way to California and New York — have reported significant increases in the number of Texas patients visiting their health centers. In Oklahoma alone, over 100 Texas patients sought abortion in one mid-September week — twice as many as the week before, and 50 times as many visited those centers in September 2020. These out-of-state appointments also have ripple effects, as full appointment books mean that people in these states may also need to seek care elsewhere. This is especially devastating for Black and Latino people, people with low incomes, and people in rural areas, who already struggle to access abortion. 

The Planned Parenthood affiliates litigating against TRTL are represented by attorneys from Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Kaplan Law Firm, a civil rights and employment firm in Austin, Texas.


Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for all people, as well as the nation’s largest provider of sex education. With more than 600 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect, and without judgment, striving to create equitable access to health care. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable education and information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives. Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that supports the independently incorporated Planned Parenthood affiliates operating health centers across the U.S.


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