Kentucky's Last Abortion Clinic to Face Off Against Governor

The shattered front door of the EMW clinic in 2015.

In opening statements, attorneys for the EMW Women's Surgical Center said the state was imposing unattainable, arbitrary regulations about transfer agreements with an ambulance company at a hospital.

Planned Parenthood joined the lawsuit because it alleges that Gov. Matt Bevin and "his administration waged a "campaign of fear and intimidation"-including a threat to block millions of dollars in public funds from University of Louisville Hospital-to prevent Planned Parenthood from getting a license", the Courier-Journal reports".

The EMW Women's Surgical Center is suing the southern state for placing what it claims are unreasonably onerous safety requirements that threaten its ability to operate.

Planned Parenthood of IN and Kentucky joined the suit because it said the same transfer agreements were used to block a license for a facility IN Louisville.


The Bevin Administration's actions are just one of the numerous cases across the country of local and state governments using petty and obscure methods to try to shut down abortion clinics. Bevin is an openly and proud Christian, and there's nothing wrong with that, but failing to uphold one our nation's founding principles of separation of church and state is unacceptable.

Arguing that there's no medical justification for the standards, the clinic is seeking a ruling that those requirements infringe on constitutional protections. The socially conservative governor calls himself an "unapologetically pro-life individual". Critics said the changes were meant to make it harder to get a state license for abortions.

A reason, but more importantly, the group said, a right. "Essentially all health-care facilities in Kentucky are required to have such agreements, and it is telling that the abortion industry believes that it alone should be exempt". The requirements have one goal: "to give the state an excuse to prohibit abortions", according to clinic attorney Donald L. Cox. The law says she can avert her eyes.

EMW, which is the site of nearly daily protests, argues that hospitals are already legally bound to accept any patient in an emergency and local EMS will transport patients without such agreements. The Supreme Court has found that access to an abortion must be guaranteed, but it remains to be seen whether eliminating every clinic in a single state would pass that test.


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