CINCINNATI — The Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas granted a temporary restraining order (TRO) today against Senate Bill 23 (S.B. 23), a law banning abortion starting at approximately six weeks of pregnancy. Abortions up to 22 weeks LMP are now - again - legal in Ohio, effective immediately. The ruling came twelve days after Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Ohio, and the law firm WilmerHale filed for immediate relief to restore abortion access in the state, which had been severely restricted since S.B. 23 took effect in June.
Now that a temporary restraining order is in place for the next 14 days, the plaintiffs have asked the court to next enter a preliminary injunction to block the law for the duration of the case.
Per the judge’s order, "No great stretch is required to find that Ohio law recognizes a fundamental right to privacy, procreation, bodily integrity and freedom of choice in health care decision making.” Likewise, the judge also found that under S.B. 23, women, and particularly pregnant women, are denied equal protection of the law with respect to the fundamental right to privacy, procreation, bodily integrity and freedom of choice in health care decision-making, which effectively denies them, and only them, access to a well - established, safe and potentially life-saving health care.
Statement from leaders from Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio, the ACLU, ACLU of Ohio, Preterm-Cleveland, Women’s Med Group Professional Corporation, Northeast Ohio Women’s Center, Toledo Women’s Center, and Dr. Sharon Liner:
“We’re grateful that, for now, Ohioans can once again widely access abortion care in their own state. But this is just the first step. We have already seen the devastating impact Senate Bill 23 has had on people seeking abortions in Ohio. State lawmakers will stop at nothing to try again to permanently restrict our reproductive rights; their cruelty knows no bounds. We remain intensely committed to defending against any and all attempts to limit Ohioans’ constitutional right to access the full range of reproductive health care in their home state.”
The ACLU, ACLU of Ohio, Planned Parenthood and WilmerHale filed the lawsuit on behalf of Preterm-Cleveland, Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio, Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, Women’s Med Group Professional Corporation, Northeast Ohio Women’s Center, Toledo Women’s Center, and Dr. Sharon Liner, an individual abortion provider, to protect the right to abortion in our state under the Ohio Constitution.