Ohio sued over 24-hour abortion waiting period

ACLU, Planned Parenthood, ask court to do away with several abortion restrictions

Credit: Avery Kreemer

Credit: Avery Kreemer

Ohio has been sued by the ACLU, Planned Parenthood and other groups over a set of laws that mandate a woman seeking an abortion wait 24 hours after receiving state literature before receiving an abortion.

The lawsuit, filed Friday in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas, was filed on behalf of Dr. Catherine Romanos, an abortion provider with Kettering’s Women’s Med, along with Preterm-Cleveland, Planned Parenthood Southwest Ohio, Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, and the Northeast Ohio Women’s Center, according to a news release.

Romanos could not be reached for comment at the time of publication.

“The challenged abortion restrictions unnecessarily require the overwhelming majority of patients to make two trips to a health center and, in practice, often force patients to wait much longer than 24 hours to receive an abortion. This delays — and in some cases, completely prevents — patients from receiving an abortion,” the statement reads.

The challengers argue that the laws now stand in stark contrast with the Ohio Constitution following November’s vote to enshrine abortion access and forbid the state from interfering with one’s reproductive decisions. They ask for the court to file a preliminary injunction on the laws and eventually declare them unconstitutional.

“Whatever a patient’s reasons, accessing abortion is essential to their autonomy, dignity, and ability to care for themselves and their families,” said Jessie Hill, an abortion-rights attorney working with the ACLU.

Since Ohioans decisively passed Issue 1 protecting access to abortions, onlookers, including Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost, have been expecting an onslaught of constitutional challenges against a slate of Ohio’s laws regarding abortion, which has heightened the tensions in the three Supreme Court of Ohio races this November. If Democrats win all three, they can take control of the seven-member bench; if Republicans win all three, the party gains near-unanimous control of state’s top court.

Yost, who is tasked with defending Ohio’s laws in court, was contacted for comment but had not gotten back to this newspaper by the time of publication.

This is a developing story. This article may be updated as more information becomes available.

Follow DDN statehouse reporter Avery Kreemer on X or reach out to him at Avery.Kreemer@coxinc.com or at 614-981-1422.

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