In Free Speech-Backed Ruling, Supreme Court Sides With California Crisis Pregnancy Centers

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A recent Supreme Court ruling has sided with crisis pregnancy centers in the state of California.
A recent Supreme Court ruling has sided with crisis pregnancy centers in the state of California.

A recent Supreme Court ruling has sided with crisis pregnancy centers in the state of California.

The court cited a free speech argument in their 5 to 4 decision, ruling that due to the First Amendment, crisis pregnancy centers could not be forced to provide factual information about ending pregnancy to women seeking to obtain an abortion.

In the majority decision, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote, “Licensed clinics must provide a government-drafted script about the availability of state-sponsored services, as well as contact information for how to obtain them. One of those services is abortion — the very practice that petitioners are devoted to opposing. California cannot co-opt the licensed facilities to deliver its message for it.”

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In his dissent, Justice Stephen G. Breyer accused the majority of inconsistency, citing a 1992 Supreme Court Case upholding a Pennsylvania law requiring abortion physicians to provide certain information to patients.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra expressed concern that the ruling would create “needless” barriers between women and access to medical care.

The ruling reversed a unanimous decision made by the Ninth Circuit US Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

Reference

Liptak A. Supreme Court Backs Anti-Abortion Pregnancy Centers in Free Speech Case. New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/26/us/politics/supreme-court-crisis-pregnancy-center-abortion.html. June 26, 2018. Accessed June 27, 2018.

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