In the coming weeks, the U.S. Supreme Court will issue its decision in the June Medical Services v. Russo case centered on the 2014 Louisiana Unsafe Abortion Protection Act. The court’s decision will have lasting impact on abortion jurisprudence.
“We are anxiously awaiting the decision,” said Louisiana Right to Life Associate Director Angie Thomas, J.D. “We introduced this law with then Rep. Katrina Jackson to protect the health and safety of women at for-profit abortion businesses. The Louisiana abortion industry, with its long history of health and safety violations, cannot speak for Louisiana women. The abortion facilities must be held to the same safety standards as every other Louisiana outpatient surgical facility. Together with the bi-partisan majority of Louisiana legislators who passed this law in 2014, we look forward to a decision that puts patients over profits and protects women.”
June Medical Services v. Russo
In June or July, the U.S. Supreme Court will issue its decision in the June Medical Services v. Russo case centered on the 2014 Louisiana Unsafe Abortion Protection Act.
In Louisiana, every physician at all outpatient surgical facilities, except abortion facilities, must have “admitting privileges” at a local hospital. These hospital privileges are common-sense safety protections to ensure that when an emergency happens at an outpatient facility, the physician can handle the complication without any delay by having the patient admitted to a local hospital and following up her care there. No matter how frequently complications occur, these protections are standard and should be universal across all outpatient surgical settings.
In 2014, then State Rep. (now State Senator) Katrina Jackson (D-Monroe), together with Louisiana Right to Life, filed the Unsafe Abortion Protection Act to close this loophole and put abortion facilities on the same safety standards level as all other outpatient surgical facilities. Legislative testimony focused on the dangerous history of Louisiana abortion facilities, the common-sense nature of admitting privileges through the words of doctors, and personal testimony of women hurt physically and emotionally by abortion.
Under the leadership of Attorney General Jeff Landry and Solicitor General Liz Murrill, Louisiana has defended the Unsafe Abortion Protection Act in federal court all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court in the current case June Medical Services v. Russo. Oral arguments were held March 4, 2020.
What’s At Stake