USA: Be Careful What You Sue For

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Be Careful What You Sue For
If the Supreme Court strikes down California’s “crisis pregnancy center” disclosure act, dozens of anti-abortion laws could fall with it.

Nov 13, 2017
By Dahlia Lithwick and Mark Joseph Stern

On Monday morning, the Supreme Court agreed to weigh in on NIFLA v. Becerra, yet another religion-fueled fight over free speech. NIFLA involves a long-simmering dispute surrounding a 2015 California law requiring the state’s more than 200 “crisis pregnancy centers” to notify patients whether they actually have a medical license, and to disclose that California subsidizes birth control and abortion services. Faith-based anti-abortion groups argue that the law violates the CPCs’ freedom of speech under the First Amendment. The Supreme Court will soon decide whether the California law is constitutionally permissible. If the justices vote to strike down the statute, abortion foes will celebrate the decision as a resounding victory for their cause. An eventual ruling against California, though, could also lead to the invalidation of anti-abortion counseling laws across the country on similar First Amendment grounds.

Continued at source: http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/11/abortion_foes_latest_supreme_court_challenge_could_turn_out_badly_for_them.html

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USA: Catholic Hospital Pressured Women to Bury Their Fetuses—Then Pence Made It Law

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Catholic Hospital Pressured Women to Bury Their Fetuses—Then Pence Made It Law

Nov 2, 2017
Amy Littlefield

While many find comfort in fetal burial programs, imposing these practices on everyone who loses or ends a pregnancy can cause profound shame and distress, a Rewire investigation found.

Texas has seen some of the nation’s most regressive abortion restrictions in recent years. This series chronicles the fall-out of those laws, and the litigation that has followed.

Tethered to an IV, naked under her hospital gown, Kate Marshall felt trapped as the chaplain approached her bed. It was 2015, and Marshall was awaiting surgery at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Indiana after losing a much-wanted pregnancy. She had not asked to speak with a chaplain, but the man had nonetheless entered her room and then pressed her to sign a consent form that would allow the Catholic hospital to bury her 11-week fetus in a cemetery plot.

Continued at source: https://rewire.news/article/2017/11/02/catholic-hospital-pressured-women-bury-fetuses-pence-made-law/

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Ireland: Delay in reforming abortion advice clinics is inexcusable

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Delay in reforming abortion advice clinics is inexcusable
February 21 2017, 12:01am, The Irish Times
by Brendan Howlin

Those on both sides of the issue can agree that lying to women is abuse. So why won’t Simon Harris update the law?
The abortion debate provokes strong emotions and arguments. We all recognise that and I hope we do our best to respect differences of opinion.

But there are some ground rules I thought we had all agreed on a long time ago.
One is that debate should be based on fact, not fiction. Another is that women in crisis pregnancies are entitled to support, information
and non-judgmental counselling if they want it.

Continued source: Irish Times: http://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/ireland/delay-in-reforming-abortion-advice-clinics-is-inexcusable-lzklrr0sj

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Ireland: ‘Dangerous’ pregnancy advice clinics face regulation

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Ellen Coyne

November 18 2016, The Times

Bogus crisis pregnancy agencies are set to be outlawed after the government last night committed to a major overhaul of how abortion information is regulated.

It is the first time a government has moved to shut down crisis pregnancy agencies which give inaccurate or misleading advice. It follows an investigation by The Times that exposed a clinic run by a Catholic anti-abortion group claiming that terminations could cause breast cancer and turn women into child abusers. The Women’s Centre on Berkeley Street in Dublin is now at the centre of a gardai investigation.

[continued at link]
Source: The Times

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‘We Don’t Do It Here’ – Abortion Rights Under Threat in Croatia

A screenshot of the Internet homepage of what purports to be an abortion clinic in Croatia but which in fact tries to dissuade women from terminating regnancies.

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01 Aug 16
Masenjka Bacic

Abortion is legal in Croatia, but increasingly feels forbidden

First, the figures:

In 1990 in Croatia, on the eve of its independence, 46,679 legal abortions were carried out. Last year, according to official figures, there were 8,181, one of the lowest rates in Europe. In 2014, of 375 gynaecologists employed in Croatian hospitals where abortions can be carried out, 166 do so. Others refuse on religious grounds.

This was my starting point for an investigation into the right to abortion in Croatia for the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence. I wanted to understand the trends behind the figures, and whether they told the whole story. While abortion remains legal, is it becoming increasingly forbidden for Croatian women?

I decided to conduct an experiment: I began calling hospitals, telling those who answered that I was pregnant and asking whether I could have an abortion in their hospital. It went like this:

Hospital in Pakrac:

- We do not do the abortions in this hospital.

- OK, can you please tell me where can I do it?

- No. I don’t know. (Hangs up).

Hospital in Knin:

- First, you need to go to the gynaecologist and then come here with findings. But, you know, you don’t have to do it here. You can go also to Zadar or Šibenik. In Šibenik, you can do it in private clinics.

Hospital in Slavonski Brod:

- If you are not from this county, you cannot do it.

Hospital in Bjelovar:

- The doctor that does abortions is on vacation. Try to call the outpatient clinic.

I turned to the Internet, typing into Google ‘clinics for abortion’ in Croatian. I clicked on the top result; a site opened, with a picture slideshow, purporting to be that of an abortion clinic. Picture 1: Bloodied scissors. Picture 2: A young baby in a woman’s arms.

Clicking on an icon titled ‘Consequences of abortion’, I was told that women who abort risk death, breast cancer, sexual dysfunction and suicidal thoughts.

This was my first encounter with the phenomenon of ‘fake’ abortion clinics advertising online with the aim of actually dissuading women from aborting. Croatia’s public attorney for gender equality has reported such sites to the Interior Ministry but they continue to operate.

I spent hours trawling the Internet, reading forums. Gradually it became clear to me: information on abortion in Croatia is travelling mainly by word of mouth, whispered by women hidden by the anonymity of online forums. As if it was illegal.

Masenjka Bacic has been a freelance print and broadcast journalist since 2007, focused mainly on social and cultural issues and minority rights. For the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence, Masenjka is investigating the threat to abortion rights in Croatia.

Source: Balkan Insight

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