Iowa, Ohio Sued Over Abortion Bans During Coronavirus Crisis – By Melissa Jeltsen (Huffingon Post) / March 30 2020
“A global pandemic is not an excuse to attack essential, time-sensitive medical procedures like abortion,” said Alexis McGill Johnson, acting president of Planned Parenthood.
State officials in Iowa and Ohio were hit with lawsuits on Monday over their decisions to ban abortion during the coronavirus outbreak.
Both states recently deemed abortion a nonessential surgical procedure that must be deferred or canceled in order to preserve medical supplies for the pandemic.
Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa and Ohio are asking district courts to immediately restore abortion access, arguing that it’s an essential, time-sensitive procedure that has been improperly categorized as elective.
A growing number of states largely governed by Republicans are using the coronavirus outbreak to crack down on abortion. In addition to Ohio and Iowa, Texas and Mississippi have ordered health care facilities to stop providing abortions.
“Patients presenting for time-sensitive care, including abortion care, need timely access to treatment, even during this pandemic,” said Katherine Ragsdale, an Episcopal priest and president and CEO of the National Abortion Federation, in a statement. “Women deserve better than a craven exploitation of a health care crisis in furtherance of an anti-abortion agenda.”