Aug. 4, 2006 –
In July, a district court in Missouri ruled that the state must allow pregnant prisoners to access â€œtimely, safe and legalâ€� abortion care. The judge also ruled that the state must provide prisoners seeking abortions off-site transportation to appropriate medical facilities if needed.
- Supreme Court Allows Missouri Inmateâ€™s Abortion* (Oct 17, 2005)
The American Civil Liberties Union filed the class-action lawsuit on behalf of all prisoners in the state seeking an abortion. The case came after the Supreme Court ruled in 2005 that prison officials must allow one un-named prisoner to receive an abortion.
As previously reported by The NewStandard, the defendant in the original case had been denied access to an abortion, despite her requests, by a Missouri Department of Corrections policy that barred the use of tax money to fund transportation for inmates undergoing abortions.
The ACLU welcomed the recent decision, which applies the earlier Supreme Court ruling to all prisoners across the state.
â€œWe applaud the court for recognizing that women do not give up their right to abortion care when they enter prison,â€� said Diana Kasdan, a staff attorney with the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project in a press release on July 18.