Planned Parenthood Challenges New South Dakota Abortion Law

A law scheduled to go into effect July 1 to require women to wait 72 hours and consult a crisis pregnancy center adviser before getting an abortion violates First Amendment rights, according to a lawsuit filed Friday by Planned Parenthood in U.S. District Court in Sioux Falls, S.D.

Calling South Dakota’s abortion laws the most burdensome in the nation, Planned Parenthood said that HB 1217 aims to misinform pregnant women with the intent of dissuading them from getting an abortion.

“Under the pretext of ensuring the patient’s decision to have an abortion is ‘voluntary, uncoerced, and informed,’ the law has both the purpose and the effect of severely restricting access to abortion services, and violates patients’ and physicians’ First Amendment rights against compelled speech and patients’ right to informational privacy,” Planned Parenthood said in a written statement.

HB 1217 was passed in March and aims to toughen the state’s current 24-hour mandatory waiting period. The law requires physicians to provide women with a list of “pregnancy help centers” where they must go to get “written proof” that they sought counseling before getting an abortion.

A woman must also be given the opportunity to view a sonogram and receive literature describing the risks associated with abortion.

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