ACLU, other organizations file lawsuit over Georgia abortion law



good afternoon I'm Andrea young the executive director of the ACLU of Georgia as you know when governor Kemp signed into law a bill violating women's constitutional rights in Georgia we promised we would see him in court we are here today to provide a status update on our response to Georgia's abortion ban law first we will hear from the legal director of the ACLU of Georgia Xianyang hello my name is Sean Young and I'm the legal director of the ACLU of Georgia today we filed a lawsuit challenging Georgia's ban on abortion otherwise known as HB 481 the lawsuit was filed on behalf of sistersong an organization committed to reproductive justice in communities of color and other marginalized communities and medical providers such as feminists women's health center and Planned Parenthood whose mission is to provide women others with the best medical care that they deserve the legal team includes the ACLU center for reproductive rights and Planned Parenthood Federation of America we're asking the court to block HB 481 from going into effect before January 2020 this law is blatantly unconstitutional under 50 years of Supreme Court precedent in every federal court to have heard a challenge to such a ban has struck it down the 14th amendment to the United States Constitution has long protected our cherished right to privacy and liberty an HB 481 tramples on those basic American freedoms but this case is also about the freedom of everyone to make their own healthcare decisions based on the advice of their doctors as the lawsuit explains HB 481 has a devastating impact on the health care of women throughout Georgia first HB 481 forces women to continue their pregnancies against their will which can expose many of them two serious health risks such as heart attacks stroke and kidney damage health risks that they will be powerless to address under the law second HB 481 threatens OBGYNs and other doctors with severe criminal penalties for providing certain standard of care treatments even to those who wish to carry their pregnancies to term if any of those treatments creates a risk that an embryo might be lost and third by threatening certain standard of care treatments and driving doctors out of the state HB 481 will have a particularly devastating impact on Georgians of color Georgians from rural areas and lower-income Georgians who are already least able to access medical care and who will have the least resources to navigate this law's cruelties so we're asking the court to block HB 481 to ensure that everyone has the freedom to make their own healthcare decisions without politicians looking over their shoulder and the freedom to decide for themselves when to start or expand a family I'm happy to take any questions about the lawsuit at the end of this conference thank you Thank You Sean we are grateful to the plaintiffs in this lawsuit for the work they do every day to make reproductive freedom and a reality for countless women in Georgia and for their personal commitment and courage first we'll hear from monica simpson the executive director of sister song the national women of color reproductive justice collaborative Monica good afternoon my name is Monica Simpson and I am excited to be able to stand before you today as the executive director of sister song a national reproductive justice collective for women of color that has been based here in Atlanta Georgia for over 20 years whenever governor Kemp signed into law House bill 481 he made a very clear message he made it clear that he was not censoring the needs of the most marginalized in this state he made it clear that he was not committed to the principles of reproductive justice he made it clear that he wasn't worried about all of the other numerous policy actions that we know that we need in this state like expanding Medicaid or addressing our rising maternal health crisis in this state or addressing the fact that we have over 70 counties without an OBGYN and we can go on and on and on about what the people of Georgia need to be able to survive and thrive and live their best lives in this state as a reproductive justice organization we work tirelessly every day to secure the human right to have the children that we want to not have children and to prevent or end pregnancies without shame and with dignity and safely and legally and to be able to parent the children that we have and healthy and safe environments without any interruption of those who do not have our best interest of our children at heart and we fight every day for the right our human right to bodily autonomy it's a self determination and to be able to make our own decisions for ourselves and our families so we're making a clear message here today as well as a plaintiff in this case we're making it clear that our organized resistance is what is going to win it is our duty to win we are committed to making sure that in the state of Georgia that racism white supremacy patriarchy sex them any other forms of oppression had no place in our policymaking because it does not emit impacts our people in negative ways we are making it clear that we are centering black/brown indigenous queer trans young people all folks across different gender binaries and sexualities in our work we are making it clear that we know that Georgians didn't ask for this and that we are going to push forward for what we know is best for our state I know it might be weird for some folks to think about an advocacy organization organization stepping into this role as a plaintiff but it is our duty as reproductive justice to make sure that we are standing firm and our principles and values and holding fast to what we know is going to be extremely important for the lives of those living in this state so we look forward to seeing governor Kemp in court and we look forward to continuing to push reproductive justice across the state in this nation so that we know and we can ensure but everyone's human right to their own self-determination to their own ability to make their own decisions about their reproductive lives is secured thank you Thank You Monica the our next speaker will be Kwajalein Jackson the executive director of the feminist women's health center and please be very clear that we are Georgia based organizations serving the people of Georgia for at least 50 years and so these are messages from people who serve and are supported by and are very integral to our communities here in the state of Georgia Kwajalein my name is spelled k w aj e l YN and i have plenty of business cards for anyone who needs that again later my name is Kwajalein Jackson and I'm the executive director of feminist women's health center we've been proudly providing abortion care and comprehensive reproductive health care in Atlanta for over 42 years and we will continue to do so with the filing of this complaint we want to remind the governor's office and the state legislature that you work for us that you're our responsibility is to respond to the needs of your constituents and to be sensitive to the stories that they have to recognize their lived experiences and use that to inform the laws that you enact and that you uphold we want to remind our policymakers that we are not going anywhere then we will continue these fights that we know that this is not the the last time that our humanity will be attacked through policy and that we remain steadfast in our opposition to anything that challenges our pursuit of reproductive justice we will not accept any law that dehumanizes us in an attempt to assign humanity to cells that are growing inside of us I want the state to recognize that the majority of Georgia is with us and we are only growing more powerful the more they try to push us back liberation is in our sight and we will not be moved from our focus towards liberation I am honored to stand united with sistersong with Planned Parenthood southeast with ACLU of Georgia with Summit Medical Center with Atlanta Women's Center with care FM with Atlanta comprehensive wellness center with Columbus Women's Health and all the other physicians and providers who have joined in this complaint who are boldly not on our watch I also stand with the indomitable coalition of folks on the ground women engaged Georgia Nehru National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum sister love unites United for reproductive and gender justice spark reproductive justice now and access reproductive care southeast we are the people who will remain undaunted in this fight we are the people who will continue to uplift the lives of people of color of marginalized communities of queer and trans folks in the face of anyone who would come to attack their well being we are honored to be represented by ACLU Center for Reproductive Rights and Planned Parenthood Federation who will be boldly dismantling this law in the courts and we challenge legislators should try this again we know we will be victorious and when we win we want our supporters to be ready for the next attacks that come we will only grow stronger as they attempt to push against us thank you so much for joining us this morning for standing with us we are grateful to Georgia thankee Kwajalein and everyone's name an organization is in the press release and in the present basri that's also on the ACLU website next we will hear from one of the iconic organizations in this fight Stacey Fox president of Planned Parenthood southeast Stacey Thank You Andrea my name is Stacey Fox and I'm the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood southeast and we work across Georgia Alabama and Mississippi where we have seen these abortion bans sweep through this spring I would be remiss this morning if I didn't take a moment to hold some space from our sage Jones a woman in Alabama who is literally facing the impact of these historical deep-seated patriarchal attacks on pregnant women this spring Georgians came out in opposition to HB 481 like we have never seen before hundreds of Georgia citizens packed the halls of the state capitol for weeks on end more than 300 Georgia business leaders spoke out publicly against this ban the medical community came out in united opposition against HB 481 and the nine billion dollar film and ended entertainment industry had continues to speak out against HB 481 and more than six thousand Georgians signed a petition urging governor Kemp to veto this bill just hours after he signed the bill Georgia politicians heard from us they just didn't listen in fact at the bill signing representative ed Setzler said that things would go back to normal once the shrill attacks of the Opposition sort of fade into the background well representative Setzler what you don't know is that we are not backing down and we will not be silent because we made some promises and we aim to keep them – the countless Georgians who we've spoke out against this ban and were ignored we promise to keep fighting every step of the way and today proves that we are – the politicians who voted for this band we promised you accountable and we are coming for you to our partners we promise that we are in this together and we are here today locked arms ready to fight this unconstitutional ban with everything we have to Governor Kemp we promised we would see you in court and we did that this morning and most importantly to our patients to all of our patients and all of the people that we represent today we promised to protect access to safe and legal abortion and what we want you to hear from us today is that every day our collective doors stay open so that you can access the quality compassionate non-judgmental health care that you deserve and that includes access to safe and legal abortion thank you

4 Replies to “ACLU, other organizations file lawsuit over Georgia abortion law”

  1. 😆😆look at these blk women pushing for blk genicide😆😆😆 where is blk lives matter….?? Foolish and SICK…

  2. GA is for freedom for babies to be born without being killed in the womb….kill your baby somewhere else…..not in Ga!

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