Clinic Files Federal Lawsuit over Missouri Law

Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri has filed a federal lawsuit claiming a new Missouri law infringes on a constitutional right to abortion. They say the law could eliminate abortion services in large parts of the state by subjecting clinics to special regulations. The new law would require any facility that performs more than five first-trimester abortions a month, or any second- or third-trimester abortions, to meet the licensure requirements for an “ambulatory surgical center.”

According to Planned Parenthood CEO Peter Brownlie, “This onerous legislation has nothing to do with protecting women’s health and safety…and is a blatant attempt to close down clinics and deny women their right to health care.”

This type of legislation is an example of a Targeted Regulation of Abortion Provider (TRAP) bill. These bills subject abortion clinics to stringent regulations, which are inappropriate and unnecessary for outpatient facilities. TRAP bills are often introduced by abortion opponents who claim that abortion is an unsafe and unregulated procedure. In fact, abortion is one of the safest medical procedures provided in the United States and Canada. By implying that abortion clinics are uniquely dangerous and in need of special regulation, such bills recklessly promote an unfounded fear of abortion and their passage can result in clinics being closed to women seeking reproductive health care.

This is clearly the case in Missouri where Sen. Delbert Scott, a lead sponsor of the legislation, acknowledged: “Certainly, abortion is our target here.”

>Learn more about TRAP laws.

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