Specious Lawsuit Attacking National Public Education Campaign About RU-486 Dismissed in Illinois

Affiliate: ACLU of Illinois
January 10, 2002 12:00 am

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ACLU of Illinois
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CHICAGO–The American Civil Liberties Union today hailed the dismissal of a specious legal claim brought by three local anti-abortion activists in Chicago challenging the accuracy of the National Abortion Federation’s (NAF) public education campaign regarding mifepristone (widely known as RU-486).

“The NAF public service announcements provided women with important and accurate information concerning a new product approved as safe by the Food and Drug Administration,” said Lorie Chaiten, Director of the Reproductive Rights Project of the ACLU of Illinois, which represented NAF.

The lawsuit challenged the accuracy of information provided by NAF in public service announcements that appeared in 14 national magazines over five months during 2001. NAF is the professional association of abortion providers in the United States and Canada dedicated to ensuring that abortion remains safe, legal and accessible.

“The withdrawal of the lawsuit clearly indicates that this case had absolutely no merit,” said Vicki Saporta, Executive Director of NAF. “The plaintiffs demonstrated throughout the process that this frivolous lawsuit was brought forward solely to advance their anti-choice agenda.”

The advertisements provided accurate information about mifepristone, an early abortion alternative approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and referred persons interested in more information to NAF’s website and toll-free hotline. Plaintiffs in the case dismissed this week claimed that information provided by NAF about mifepristone was “deceptive” under Illinois law.

Pursuant to the court’s dismissal order, issued by Cook County Circuit Court Judge Lester D. Foreman on January 7, the individuals who brought the lawsuit are responsible for paying all court costs and are prohibited from reinitiating this action against NAF.

Lawyers for the ACLU were joined by the law firm of Wilmer, Cutler and Pickering in providing legal representation for NAF in this matter, Nancy Koprowski, et. al. v. The National Abortion Federation.

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