Senate Bill 157, set to go into effect on March 23, requires that all abortion facilities have a “written transfer agreement” (WTA) with a local hospital. This facilitates emergency care in the case of an aborted infant who is born alive, and ensures babies are not left to die inside the abortionist’s facility.
The alternative to the WTA is to contract with at least four OB-GYNS who have admitting privileges at a local hospital. But these doctors cannot in any way be contracted or paid employees of a taxpayer-funded university. The purpose is to ensure that taxpayers are not subsidizing abortions in the state.
The lawsuit, filed on February 25, asks for an injunction against SB 157, also known as the Born Alive Infant Protection Act.
The ACLU attorneys who filed the suit said the law, if it goes into effect, would likely lead to abortion facilities shutting down in the state. Women’s Med Dayton, “is in danger of [Ohio Department of Health] revoking [its license],” the lawsuit stated.
Planned Parenthood would also be burdened by the new law, and its staff would have to “spend many hours” to find and train doctors, the lawsuit stated.
“Ohio politicians are piling yet another medically unnecessary, arbitrary, and onerous requirement on abortion facilities in an attempt to put abortion out of reach for Ohioans,” ACLU attorney Amy Gilbert said in a statement. “We are urging the court to see through this façade and block this law, which violates the Constitution of our state.”
“Barring abortion providers from contracting with highly qualified physicians is the opposite of good patient care,” regional Planned Parenthood president Kersha Deibel said. “Ohioans deserve better.”
Ohio Right to Life (ORTL) previously said the legislation is “anti-infanticide.”
“No baby in Ohio, regardless of the circumstances surrounding their birth, should be left alone to die,” ORTL said in a statement in October after the bill passed the state senate. “This vital anti-infanticide legislation will ensure that no baby who survives a botched abortion is denied life-saving care.”
“It will also hold abortionists accountable by establishing a much-needed reporting requirement to document when a child is born alive after an attempted abortion,” ORTL said.
The abortion advocacy groups could have success with this lawsuit, as they have previously found a sympathetic ear in Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas Judge Alison Hatheway.
Planned Parenthood and ACLU obtained an injunction from Judge Hatheway on February 2 to halt a fetal burial law that aims to prevent abortionists from throwing aborted babies into dumpsters or storing them in garages.
Judge Hatheway ruled that requiring the dignified burial or cremation of aborted babies raised due process concerns.