This past week, we filed an amicus brief in support of Planned Parenthood of Montana in a lawsuit challenging four harmful laws that together would:

  • Ban abortion after twenty weeks;
  • Prohibit state health insurance plans sold through the federal exchange from including abortion coverage; and impose a multitude of medically unnecessary restrictions that serve no purpose other than to force pregnant people to make multiple unnecessary trips to access care that is extremely safe and straightforward.

Our amicus brief focused on the impact of medically unnecessary restrictions on access to abortion care on survivors of intimate partner violence, especially on survivors of color. The State’s argument that the restrictions at issue are somehow beneficial for pregnant people frankly does not pass the straight face test.

Currently, there is an injunction in place preventing these laws from taking effect. If the Montana Supreme Court were to lift the injunction, these restrictions will only strengthen the control that perpetrators of intimate partner violence are able to exert over survivors. As we explained in our brief, “Added barriers to abortion will force a significant number of pregnant people to carry their pregnancies to term against their will, at great risk to their lives and health.”

We share our utmost gratitude to all who helped pull this together: Lauren Stanier, Amanda Beane, Hannah Parman, Mathew Gordon, Susan Koenig, and June Starr at Perkins Coie; Grace Huang, Director of Policy at the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence, Robin Turner at Turner Strategies, PLLC; and Kelsen Young at the Montana Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence.

And to the organizations who signed on, having a strong interest in ensuring that survivors of intimate partner violence have full access to reproductive health options, including abortion:

  • The Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence
  • Caminar Latino
  • Custer Network Against Domestic Abuse
  • The District 4 Human Resources Development Council
  • Domestic and Sexual Violence Services
  • The Idaho Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence
  • Legal Voice
  • The Montana Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence
  • The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
  • The National Network to End Domestic Violence
  • Richland County Coalition Against Domestic Violence
  • SAFE in the Bitterroot
  • Safe Space
  • Sanders County Coalition for Families
  • Sexual Assault Counseling Center
  • Ujima, Inc: The National Center on Violence Against Women in the Black Community
  • Victim-Witness Assistance for Services
  • The Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence
  • The YWCA of Great Falls
  • The YWCA of Missoula