ACLU sues Indiana over law that requires women get ultrasound 18 hours before abortion

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INDIANAPOLIS — The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana is challenging a new state requirement that women get an ultrasound at least 18 hours before they have an abortion.

The ACLU filed the federal lawsuit on Thursday saying the provision that took effect July 1 is unconstitutional because it places an undue burden on women’s right to obtain an abortion.

“The requirement that women obtain an ultrasound at least 18 hours before an abortion, as opposed to allowing PPINK to continue its practice of providing one immediately prior to the abortion, provides no health benefit to women and serves only to place a substantial obstacle to obtaining an abortion,” said Ken Falk, ACLU of Indiana legal director. “This law, therefore, is an unconstitutional undue burden on abortion access.”

The lawsuit filed on behalf of Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky says the new requirement will cause Planned Parenthood’s few clinics with ultrasound equipment to become more crowded, delay abortions and prevent some women from getting an abortion.

Last week a federal judge granted Planned Parenthood’s request for a preliminary injunction, blocking other key features of an anti-abortion measure that would have gone into effect July 1.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.