Media Contact

Alessandra Soler, ACLU of Arizona,, (602) 301-3705 (cell)
Robyn Shepherd, ACLU national,, (212) 519-7829 or 549-2666

May 21, 2013


SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit today struck down an Arizona law that would ban almost all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. The law was challenged by the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Arizona, and the Center for Reproductive Rights on behalf of three physicians and their patients.

“We’re glad the court has reaffirmed that states cannot place unlawful burdens on a woman’s right to access safe reproductive health care," said Talcott Camp, deputy director of the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project. "Politicians do not have the right to interfere in serious and personal decisions that should only be made by a woman with the help of her family and her doctor."

The ban would have forced a physician caring for a woman with a high-risk pregnancy to wait until her condition poses an immediate threat of death or major medical damage before offering her the care she needs. The ban also contained no exceptions for a woman who learns her fetus will not survive after birth.

"Lawmakers cannot impose their personal ideologies on the women of Arizona,” said Dan Pochoda, legal director with the ACLU of Arizona. “This law endangered women’s health and was knowingly passed by the Arizona legislature despite clearly violating established constitutional requirements.”

The decision is attached here:  9th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion

For more information on this case, please visit our website at: reproductive-freedom/isaacson-v-horne