Federal District Court Temporarily Blocks Mississippi’s Unconstitutional 15-Week Ban in Response to Center for Reproductive Rights Challenge

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(MEDIA ADVISORY) Today, a federal judge in Mississippi issued a temporary restraining order blocking the state’s unconstitutional ban on abortion after 15 weeks. The Center for Reproductive Rights filed a lawsuit challenging the ban yesterday hours after Governor Phil Bryant signed the bill into law. In its filing, the Center for Reproductive Rights asked the court to block the ban and safeguard access to safe and legal abortion for women in Mississippi, where only one clinic remains.

HB 1510 violates longstanding Supreme Court precedent, established in Roe v. Wade and reaffirmed in 2016 in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, that a state may not ban abortion before viability. Mississippi’s law places substantial civil penalties on doctors who provide that care. The Center for Reproductive Rights argues that by banning abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy, the law violates decades of well-established, clear precedent under the U.S. Constitution. Courts have consistently struck down similar bans on abortion before viability as unconstitutional.

The temporary restraining order will remain in effect for 10 days.

Julie Rikelman, Hillary Schneller, and Christine Parker from the Center for Reproductive Rights filed the suit, along with local counsel Robert B. McDuff in Jackson, Miss.