Legal Restrictions

The U.S. Legal Department strives to protect and advance reproductive liberty and access to reproductive health care in the United States by employing diverse strategies grounded in CRR's legal expertise.

To learn more about the different areas of our work, please check out our U.S. litigation, advocacy work in Washington, D.C. and the states, U.S.-based human rights work, and our Law School Initiative.

The Center's litigation work in the United States seeks to broadly promote reproductive rights. Our goals include:

  • Securing recognition that reproductive freedom is both a fundamental constitutional right and a human right that the government is obligated to respect, protect and fulfill;
  • Ensuring that all women have access to safe and affordable contraception;
  • Protecting women’s access to safe, legal and affordable abortion services;
  • Ensuring that adolescents have access to reproductive health services; that adolescents’ confidentiality is protected in their pursuit of those services; and that adolescents have access to age-appropriate, comprehensive sexuality education;
  • Defending abortion providers against unreasonable government actions

En Vedette

Crisis in the South

Last month, under the cover of night, a hooded intruder took a hatchet-like tool to the last abortion clinic in the state of Mississippi—smashing security cameras, damaging the generator, and attempting to cut the power lines…

Miscarriage of Justice

Last week, Guadalupe spent her first night at home as a free woman following seven years in prison. After mounting international and local pressure prompted the Salvadoran government to issue a pardon in her case, she was quietly released…

Helms Hurts

For Roselyn, a reproductive health care worker in Uganda—where abortion is legal in some circumstances but very difficult to access—death is an everyday part of her job due to the high incidence of unsafe abortions…

What a Sham

“Why is there an RV in our parking lot?” Amy Hagstrom Miller, owner of Whole Woman’s Health, remembers thinking one morning as she looked out the window of her Austin, Texas, clinic…

A Walk in Her Shoes

Days shy of 20 weeks pregnant, Whitney went in for a routine ultrasound and her world came to a standstill. …

Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice v. Cline

Oklahoma passed a law, which was to go into effect November 1, 2014, requiring physicians providing medication abortions to use an obsolete method that does not meet the current standard of care and is less safe and more burdensome for women than the current practice.

The Center

Burns v. Cline (OK)

Oklahoma passed a law in 2014 requiring that physicians providing abortions obtain admitting privileges at a hospital within thirty miles of the facility where they provide care, or face criminal and civil penalties.

The Center

Our Top Five

In the face of ongoing, aggressive attacks on reproductive freedom in 2014, we continued to give our all to protect women’s fundamental rights—with big results…

Imprisoned in Malaysia After Legal Abortion

UPDATE: Following her conviction in November 2014, Nirmala’s case was appealed to the Penang High Court earlier this month. The judge determined that because she was not provided adequate interpretation at her trial, the conviction was invalid.

Warning: Pregnancy May Be Harmful to Your Civil Rights

“At no point in her pregnancy should a woman lose her civil and human rights,” assert the authors of a recent op-ed in the New York Times

Our Work in Focus

In the United States, state legislatures wield enormous power to control women's access to abortion and other reproductive healthcare services…
In their efforts to make abortion inaccessible to as many women as possible, anti-choice forces have focused on burdening minors' access to abortion…
In Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court held that bans on abortion are unconstitutional…
Biased counseling laws, on the books in many states, require woman seeking an abortion to receive information dictated by the state prior to undergoing the procedure…
Laws that restrict the use of public funds for abortion can create barriers to women’s abortion access that are as difficult for women to overcome as laws that directly restrict the availability of abortion.  Funding restrictions endanger women’s health and, as some state courts have held,…
Human Rights defenders are the activists, including journalists, lawyers, judges, and healthcare providers, whose work allows others to exercise their human rights…
In 1973, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Roe v. Wade, that a woman's right to obtain an abortion was protected under the federal constitution…

Related Content: