A three judge panel of the Arizona Court of Appeals ruled unanimously to overturn a preliminary injunction issued by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Donald Daughton in 2009, which blocked portions of a restrictive state abortion law. Judge Daughton’s ruling prevented anti-abortion provisions from going into effect, including one that would require that women be counseled by a doctor 24 hours prior to obtaining an abortion and one that would require minors seeking abortion services to present a notarized statement from their parents. The law also includes a provision that permits pharmacists and health care personnel to refuse to prescribe emergency contraception on religious grounds.
In the Appeals Court ruling, Judge Peter Swann wrote, “We hold that the statutes affected by the preliminary injunction are constitutional, and we therefore vacate the injunction in its entirety.”
Bryan Howard, president of Planned Parenthood of Arizona, indicated that Planned Parenthood was considering whether to appeal the ruling, which will severely limit women’s access to abortion in Arizona. Howard stated, “We’re looking at all of our options. The bottom line is that the new restrictions imposed by the law are going to put women in harm’s way. And we will fight that…The bottom line is women are going to be hurt by this. It’s really, to one degree or another, going to impact women from across the state and that’s not acceptable.”