Reproductive Freedom issue image

Preterm-Cleveland, et al, v. Dave Yost, et al.

Location: Ohio
Status: Ongoing
Last Update: March 29, 2024

What's at Stake

The American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Ohio, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and the law firm Covington & Burling LLP filed a lawsuit challenging several Ohio laws that together force abortion patients to wait a minimum of 24 hours after receiving unnecessary state-mandated information in person before they can access their desired abortion care. These laws violate Ohio’s constitutional right to reproductive freedom passed on November 7, 2023. Ohio is one of four states that have amended their constitutions to enshrine a fundamental right to abortion since the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

The challenged abortion restrictions unnecessarily require the overwhelming majority of patients to make two trips to a health center and, in practice, often force patients to wait much longer than 24 hours to receive an abortion. This delays—and in some cases, completely prevents —patients from receiving an abortion. Under Ohio law, no other medical treatments or procedures that are similarly time-sensitive are subject to a legally-imposed waiting period or a requirement that a patient make a separate, in person visit to obtain state-mandated information prior to receiving care. The challenged abortion restrictions provide no health benefit and lack any medical justification. Rather, by unnecessarily delaying time-sensitive abortion care and forcing upon patients information that is often harmful, distressing, and stigmatizing, the laws only harm Ohioans’ health and well-being.

The plaintiffs have asked the court to declare the challenged restrictions unconstitutional and issue both a preliminary and permanent injunction to stop the state from enforcing these restrictions.

The lawsuit was filed in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas on behalf of Preterm-Cleveland, Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio Region, Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, Women’s Med Group Professional Corporation, Northeast Ohio Women’s Center, and Dr. Catherine Romanos.

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