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CRLP Takes Anti-Abortion Law to U.S. Supreme Court

On November 17, the Center for Reproductive Law and Policy (CRLP) petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down South Carolina’s Regulation Number 61-12, a measure that imposes “medically unnecessary” regulations on abortion providers. CRLP classified Regulation 61-12 as a “Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers” (TRAP), a “wave of regulations intended to make abortion prohibitively expensive and increasingly difficult to obtain.” Despite the fact that abortion providers must already comply with state and federal laws governing similar health care providers, South Carolina’s Regulation 61-12 “subjects abortion providers to unique levels of government intrusion and oversight.” The law requires patients to undergo tests for sexually transmitted diseases, whether or not a doctor deems then necessary, and allows a state agency to copy and remove patient records, in direct violation of doctor-patient confidentiality. It also requires specific architectural features of the facility, including hallway and doorway width, that are not imposed on similar health care facilities and which can substantially raise costs for the provider. CRLP is challenging the regulation as an endangerment to women’s health, and a violation of privacy rights and the Equal Protection clause of the U.S. Constitution. “The true intent [of this TRAP law] is to make it virtually impossible for physicians to provide abortions in their office and to segregate abortion services from mainstream medicine,” said CRLP staff attorney Bonnie Scott Jones.

Sources:

Center for Reproductive Law and Policy Press Release _ November 17, 2000 and Kaiser Daily Reproductive Health Report - November 20, 2000