Illinois action blog

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Indiana's New Law: Medically Inaccurate and Unconstitutional

Yesterday, Governor Mitch Daniels (R-IN), signed HEA 1210 into law. The legislation cuts off federal funding to all twenty-eight Planned Parenthood centers in the state, instantly taking away access to birth control, cancer screenings and STD testing from thousands of low-income women and men. Why? Because anti-choice elected officials in IN are against one of the services Planned Parenthood provides, which happens to be protected by the constitution.  Apparently they've also overlooked the fact that family planning dollars fund preventive health services that are critical to low-income and vulnerable women, not abortion.

The new law also lets physicians provide medically innaccurate information to patients by codifying that "human physical life" begins with the fertilized egg. According to the law, doctors are required to inform their patients that the fetus "may feel pain" in order for an abortion to be "voluntary" and "informed." It also directly contradicts Roe v. Wade by banning any abortion twenty weeks after conception.

We are outraged that Daniels signed this unconscionable legisation that violates a woman's right to make her own health decisions, compromises her ability to access essential healthcare services, and distorts medical information.

In response to Daniels signing HEA 1210 into law, the American Civil Liberties Union of America, along with lawyers from the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, filed a request for an injunction and temporary restraining order in the U.S District Court. If the judge rules in our favor, it would temporarily prevent the leglislation from taking effect as we continue to fight the law. A ruling is expected later this afternoon.

Regardless, Planned Parenthood of Indiana is committed to continuing to provide their healthcare services during the fight against HEA 1210. “By signing this bill, the governor has put the health care of thousands of Hoosiers who rely on federal funding at risk,” said PPIN President and CEO Betty Cockrum.  “And by signing when he did, he put patients with appointments tomorrow at PPIN health centers in danger of not getting their birth control or physical exams. However, we’re not going to let that happen.  We will see all patients who rely on federal funding that have appointments until we receive a ruling in this case, and will cover those costs out of our Women’s Health Fund.”

Check out this great broadcast from NPR to learn more about the situation and what HEA 1210 reveals about the future challenges our organization will face. To stay informted on the situation as it develops, check out our Facebook page, or Planned Parenthood of Indiana's Facebook page where you'll find updates and articles as the counter-attack on HEA 1210 continues.

Technorati tags: Planned Parenthood, Mitch Daniels, HEA 1210

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