Paving a New Path forward for Abortion Access
On May 29, 2019, Gender Justice, in partnership with the Lawyering Project, filed a complaint in the Second Judicial District of Minnesota on behalf two healthcare providers, the First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis, and Our Justice. The lawsuit, Doe v. Minnesota, challenges a list of abortion restrictions that serve no medical purpose on the grounds that they violate the Minnesota State Constitution.
Deciding whether or when to become a parent is about freedom and control over our lives at our most basic level: our bodies, our families, our future. Minnesotans respect each other’s rights, freedoms, and independence to make our own decisions without the state government or politicians trying to sway us one way or the other.
AMONG THE ABORTION RESTRICTIONS CHALLENGED IN THE LAWSUIT ARE THOSE THAT:
Require doctors to read a script containing irrelevant and medically-inaccurate statements to patients;
Prevent trained nurse midwives and nurse practitioners from providing early abortion care;
Mandate a medically-unnecessary extra appointment and waiting period;
Mandate that young people notify both parents (with extremely narrow exceptions) before seeking an abortion.
In 1995, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled in Doe v. Gomez that our state constitution protects not only Minnesotans’ right to have an abortion, but also the right to decide to have an abortion without government interference or bias. Over time, however, abortion opponents have succeeded in chipping away at these rights, violating both the spirit and the letter of the law.
The decisions around planning for our families is intimate and radiates through every facet of our lives – from obtaining education, leaving unhealthy relationships, growing in the workplace, finding economic security, and more.
We know too well that women and people who can get pregnant can never be equal in society without bodily autonomy and the ability to decide if, when, and how to become a parent.
As attacks on access to safe, legal, essential reproductive health care sweep through many other states across the country, now is the time to respect our state constitution, respect women and equality, and protect all of our rights and freedoms.
THE FIRST UNITARIAN SOCIETY OF MINNEAPOLIS HAS A LONG HISTORY OF SUPPORTING REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH, RIGHTS AND JUSTICE. Rev. Kelli Clement, Social Justice Minister, First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis
DOE V. STATE OF MINNESOTA IN THE NEWS
Lawsuit targets rules on waiting period, parent notification, fetal disposal. Star Tribune. May 29, 2019.
Groups file suite against ‘Restrictive’ Minnesota Abortion Laws. WCCO. May 29, 2019.
UnRestrict Minnesota. Minnesota Women’s Press. May 29, 2019.
Abortion rights groups file lawsuit to block future Minnesota restrictions on procedure. MPR News. May 29, 2019.
Pro-choice advocates sue Minnesota over ‘burdensome and unnecessary’ abortion laws. City Pages. May 30, 2019.
With this case we can pave a new path forward for abortion rights by getting these laws off the books once and for all.
HELP US PROTECT ABORTION RIGHTS IN MN
Learn about the current laws and tell your friends, family, and colleagues about them as well. The Minnesota Constitution and Supreme Court rulings guarantee and protect people’s right to decide to end a pregnancy and to get abortion care, without the government trying to sway you one way or another. In preparing for this lawsuit, we have found that most folks are unaware of the anti-abortion legislation in this state. You can help change that - visit UnRestrict Minnesota to learn more.
With your financial support, Gender Justice can continue to fight hard for our clients and push the laws forward in our legislature. Be there with us as we work to bring about big, systemic change. Give today.