Nation & World News

Federal Judge Says N.C. Ultrasound Abortion Law Is Illegal

By Bill Chappell on January 17th, 2014

A controversial North Carolina law requiring women who want to have an abortion to undergo an ultrasound scan is illegal, according to a federal judge’s ruling issued Friday. The state’s law required that the women have a medical professional tell them what the image depicts. It also said the women should “listen to the heartbeat of the unborn child.”

U.S. District Judge Catherine Eagles issued her ruling in Greensboro, N.C., where the News Observer reports the judge “called the law ‘overbroad,’ and said it didn’t sufficiently protect women who didn’t want to be exposed to that information.”

After the law took effect in 2011, Eagles issued an injunction that blocked the ultrasound requirement, citing reservations over enlisting medical providers to deliver a “non-medical message to patients unwilling to hear or see,” as North Carolina’s Daily Tar Heel reported.

The judge echoed those ideas in today’s ruling.

“It is an impermissible attempt to compel these providers to deliver the state’s message in favor of childbirth and against abortion,” Eagles said, according to the News Observer.

Titled the Women’s Right to Know Act, the law was linked to controversy from its early days. After lawmakers initially approved it in 2011, the law was vetoed by Gov. Bev Purdue. But the two chambers of North Carolina’s Republican-led Assembly voted to overrule the veto.

From the AP:

“Eagles had put the law on hold a few months after the Republican-led state legislature passed the law in 2011. She said then that providers did not have to place an ultrasound image next to a pregnant woman so she can view it, describe its features and offer the patient the chance to listen to the heartbeat.”

News of Eagles’ decision was welcomed by opponents of the law — Planned Parenthood, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the Center for Reproductive Rights.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

This entry was posted in News from NPR. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.

 

More Stories in News from NPR

The 2012 attacks on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, happened without an intelligence failure, a House panel concludes. A photo from 2013 shows wreckage outside the main gate of the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.

House Panel Finds ‘No Intelligence Failure’ Before Benghazi Attack

The final report by the House Intelligence Committee concludes that the CIA “ensured sufficient security for CIA facilities in Benghazi and… bravely assisted the State Department” on Sept. 11, 2012.


In Britain, a new bus running between Bath and the Bristol airport uses biomethane for power. The gas is derived from human sewage and food waste.

Poo Power: New British Bus Runs On Human Waste

Touting the use of renewable energy, the Bath Bus Company says the Bio-Bus runs cleaner than a bus powered by a traditional diesel engine.


People walk along the beach in Tijuana, Mexico, near San Diego, where metal bars marking the border with the U.S. meet the sea.

A Closer Look At Obama’s Immigration Plan: What’s In It, Who’s Affected

The actions announced Thursday are complicated and will lead to many changes in immigration policy. Here we try to explain it plainly.


Daniel Handler — aka Lemony Snicket — apologized Thursday for his "ill-conceived attempts at humor" during the National Book Awards ceremony Wednesday.

Book News: Daniel Handler Apologizes For Jokes At National Book Awards

Handler, better known as Lemony Snicket, hosted Wednesday’s ceremony — and made a few racially charged jokes while doing so. He apologized after a backlash Thursday. Also: A Beach Boy plans a memoir.


Republicans File Suit Against Obama Administration Over Health Law

House Republicans have been threatening to sue President Obama over executive actions he’s taken on the Affordable Care Act. Today, they pulled the trigger.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments