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INDIANAPOLIS, IN — Today, attorneys for Indiana abortion providers and advocates filed a request with the Indiana Supreme Court to rehear a challenge to the state’s impending abortion ban and keep the law blocked while litigation continues. In June, the court ruled that the ban, which contains extremely limited exceptions, could take effect as soon as August 1. 

In their petition for rehearing plaintiffs indicated that they will ask the trial court to block the section of the abortion ban that limits health care providers’ ability to offer abortion in cases where the health of the pregnant person is threatened. In its June 30 opinion, the court suggested that the ban’s health exception — which is limited to severe and substantial threat to a person’s physical health or life — may not be broad enough to comply with the Indiana Constitution. 

The abortion ban (S.E.A. 1) outlaws abortion almost entirely and threatens providers with criminal penalties. The ban contains limited exceptions: serious risk to the physical health or life of a pregnant person, excluding threats to mental health; diagnosis of a “lethal fetal anomaly”; and rape or incest before 12 weeks of pregnancy. The new law eliminates all abortion clinics in Indiana, leaving hospitals the only option for patients who need care under the law's narrow exceptions — an option neither affordable nor widely accessible for many patients. 

The request for rehearing was filed by Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the Lawyering Project, the ACLU of Indiana, and WilmerHale on behalf of Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Hawaiʻi, Alaska, Indiana, Kentucky, Women’s Med Group Professional Corp, All-Options, Inc, and Dr. Amy Caldwell.

Statement from Rebecca Gibron, CEO of Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Hawai’i, Alaska, Indiana, Kentucky (PPGNHAIK):

“This ban will prevent pregnant Hoosiers from making decisions about their own bodies, and prevent their providers from giving them the care they need – even while ongoing litigation proceeds through the Court. If the Indiana Supreme Court allows the ban to go into effect now, pregnant people and their health care providers will be left to navigate this confusing legal environment on their own. We are hopeful that the court will act to protect the health and wellbeing of Hoosiers.” 

Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Hawaiʻi, Alaska, Indiana, Kentucky will hold a press conference tomorrow, August 1, 2023, to discuss the abortion ban and health care providers’ commitment to serving Indiana. RSVP for a zoom link and location to [email protected]