ACLU, Planned Parenthood files suit challenging new ultrasound requirements 

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A new state law that changes the requirements of timing an ultrasound before an abortion is going under the microscope.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana filed a suit on behalf of Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky (PPINK) challenging the constitutionality of the law that took effect July 1.

“The requirement that women obtain an ultrasound at least 18 hours before an abortion, as opposed to allowing PPINK to continue its practice of providing one immediately prior to the abortion, provides no health benefit to women and serves only to place a substantial obstacle to obtaining an abortion,” said Ken Falk, ACLU of Indiana legal director, in a statement. “This law, therefore, is an unconstitutional undue burden on abortion access.”


The law requires a woman to have an ultrasound 18 hours before she has an abortion. This changes the previous law that allowed the required ultrasound to be performed the same day as the abortion procedure.

“Ultrasounds are an essential part of our medical practice,” said Betty Cockrum, president and CEO of PPINK, in a statement. “We wish Indiana’s politicians would leave the practice of medicine to doctors and health care providers rather than interfering yet again.”

This challenge follows a federal court’s decision to grant Planned Parenthood’s preliminary injunction request regarding another Indiana abortion law.

“Last week, the Supreme Court made perfectly clear that restrictions that serve no purpose except to put obstacles in the path of a women trying to end a pregnancy cannot stand,” said Jennifer Dalven, director of the Reproductive Freedom Project with the ACLU, in a statement. “Make no mistake about it, this Indiana law is just another example of an unnecessary restriction that is blatantly unconstitutional.”

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