Reproductive Justice advocates celebrate Supreme Court ruling
The Supreme Court's monumental decision to vote in favor of Texas clinics protesting state regulations unequivocally upholds women's right to get an abortion and have access to healthcare services that have been burdened down by regulations restricting access to medical services, like abortion, in states such as Texas.
The justices voted 5-3 Monday in favor of Texas clinics that protested the regulations as a thinly veiled attempt to make it harder for women to get an abortion in the nation's second-most populous state.
Justice Stephen Breyer's majority opinion for the court held that the regulations are medically unnecessary and unconstitutionally limit a woman's right to an abortion.
Texas had argued that its 2013 law and subsequent regulations were needed to protect women's health. The rules required doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals and forced clinics to meet hospital-like standards for outpatient surgery.
Tar Heel implications
Initially, the Supreme Court decision won't do much in the Tar Heel State. While there are similarities, there are no direct comparisons by which the Court's ruling would force immediate changes.
But for advocates, it was a victory nonetheless.
"The Court is sending a clear signal that abortion is a constitutional right and that it needs to mean something in actually, in reality, not just in theory," said N.C. ACLU-head Sarah Preston. "Women need to have access to abortions and these obstacles that prevent women from getting real access to health care are potentially unconstitutional."
Preston says there are two specific provisions in state law that could be affected by today's decision; one, that forces doctors to send some ultrasound pictures to the state to be kept on file, the other, requires a 72-hour waiting period to get an abortion.