Emily Rice Published

ACLU Drops Federal Lawsuit Against W.Va. Abortion Ban

A gavel next to a sign that reads the word abortion.Dollar Photo

West Virginia abortion providers and advocates dropped a federal lawsuit challenging multiple provisions of the state’s near-total abortion ban.

The Women’s Health Center of West Virginia said in a court filing Monday that one of the physicians involved in the suit “has now determined that he will not be able to resume providing abortion care in West Virginia at this time.” The other physician involved in the lawsuit is “no longer available for that role.”

“The physicians who previously worked at the clinic are not able to resume providing abortion care in West Virginia at this time, and so the plaintiffs have decided to discontinue the lawsuit, but have reserved the right to refile if and when the circumstances are right,” said Aubrey Sparks, managing attorney of the ACLU of West Virginia. “The ACLU remains committed to using every tool at our disposal to ensure that everyone in West Virginia can get the essential care they need.”

The lawsuit filed on Feb. 1 claimed West Virginia’s Unborn Child Protection Act is unconstitutional, irrational and caused irreparable harm to the clinic and its patients.

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said in a press release that his office will continue to defend the state’s near-total abortion ban.

“As West Virginia’s first pro-life attorney general, I stand firm in the belief that it is our duty to protect innocent life,” Morrisey said. “We need to save as many innocent babies’ lives as legally possible. I am proud to stand for the most vulnerable of our society and the sanctity of life. My office stands ready to defend this clearly constitutional law to the fullest should this lawsuit be refiled, or against any other legal challenge.”