Colchester, VT — Today, the Supreme Court struck down a medically unnecessary Louisiana abortion restriction in a 5-4 decision in June Medical Services v. Russo. This means access to safe, legal abortion in Louisiana is protected for now, but attacks on our reproductive rights continue. The court ruled that Louisiana’s abortion restriction, which is identical to one it struck down four years ago in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, cannot stand under that precedent — it is unconstitutional to impose medically unnecessary laws that burden a person’s right to safe, legal abortion.
Statement from Meagan Gallagher, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of Northern New England:
“With today’s decision, the Supreme Court sent a clear message to anti-abortion politicians across the country - that it is time to stop the attempts to take away safe, legal abortion.
“While today is a victory for Louisianans, the attacks on our access to health care and our safety are far from over. Abortion is safe and legal in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and in every state in America. Yet, far too many people — particularly people of color and people struggling to make ends meet — live in a world where the ability to obtain an abortion is still determined by where you live, how much money you make, and the color of your skin. This is simply unacceptable.
“Planned Parenthood of Northern New England is proud to provide a wide range of high quality, compassionate sexual and reproductive health care services--including abortion. People of all genders, sexual orientations, ages, races, incomes, and immigration status are welcome here because we believe everyone deserves equal access to our services and we will always put the health and safety of our patients above politics.”
A record-high 77 percent of Americans say they do not want to see Roe v. Wade overturned, and there is no state where making abortion illegal is popular. But last year alone, more than 300 abortion restrictions were introduced in nearly every state in the country. Reproductive rights supporters have been galvanized by these attacks — advocating for policies that would expand health care access and protect access to safe, legal abortion, with major legislation passing in Illinois, New York, and several other states. In fact, one-quarter of all proactive abortion policies passed since Roe v. Wade were enacted just last year. Planned Parenthood Action Fund will continue to push Congress to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act, which would protect against these harmful restrictions put forward by state politicians.