Supreme Court Rejects Indiana’s Request to Review Law That Would End Funding for Family Planning

Affiliate: ACLU of Indiana
May 28, 2013 12:00 am

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Indianapolis – The U.S. Supreme Court today denied a State of Indiana petition to hear a challenge to an Indiana law that would have defunded family planning programs throughout the state.

Jane Henegar, ACLU of Indiana Executive Director, said “We are happy that the Supreme Court’s action lets stand the Appeals Court ruling that the State does not have plenary authority to exclude a class of providers for any reason. Federal law protects the right of Medicaid patients to choose a health care provider free of interference from the State.”

The American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Indiana, Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Planned Parenthood Federation of America initially challenged the law, HEA 1210, in 2011. The law would have prevented Medicaid patients from obtaining services at Planned Parenthood and other facilities that provide abortion care, and it would have penalized health care providers who perform abortions, even though they do so without using federal dollars. In October 2012, a three-judge panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit upheld the lower court injunction.

“This has been a long fight, but one that has been worthwhile because we’ve been fighting on behalf of our patients and their access to lifesaving, preventive care such as Pap tests, breast and testicular exams, birth control and STD testing and treatment,” said Betty Cockrum, PPIN’s president and CEO. “While the State has been trying to score political points and wasting taxpayer dollars, we’ve been standing up for the Hoosiers who count on us every day. We look forward to the day the preliminary injunction in this case becomes permanent.”

“This dangerous law put politics above women’s health,” said Talcott Camp, deputy director of the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project. “It effectively barred access to vital medical services, the lower court properly held it unconstitutional, and we are not surprised that the Supreme Court let that decision stand.”

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