Arizona Court Upholds Abortion Ban

On Friday, an Arizona court ruled against abortion rights groups, refusing to block a previous order that put a halt to abortions.

Pima County Superior Court Judge Kellie Johnson had issued a ruling on Sept. 23, which, in effect, lifted a 1973 injunction on abortion bans, meaning that abortion procedures were once again outlawed.

Johnson had been persuaded by the argument that women do not have a constitutional right to abortion, and therefore, the ban should be lifted.

Before that decision, abortions had been allowed in the state up until viability, which usually occurs about six months into the pregnancy. After the 1973 injunction was lifted, abortions were no longer allowed after 15 weeks.

Friday’s ruling represents a rejection of the last-ditch efforts being made by abortion rights groups to reinstate the 1973 injunction.

Brittany Fonteno, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Arizona, stressed the toll these decisions take on the citizens of Arizona.

“It is impermissible that Arizonans are waking up each morning to their elected officials making conflicting statements about which laws are in effect or claiming that they do not know, and yet the court has refused to provide any clarity or relief,” Fonteno said.

Now that the 1973 injunction has been removed, citizens who perform or aid in an abortion face two to five years in prison.

Ashleigh Feiring, a nurse at abortion provider Camelback Family Planning in Phoenix, said that they are not giving up on patients.

“We’re trying to think of everything we can to get loopholes in the law,” Feiring stated.

Arizona is part of a wave of 13 states that promptly moved to ban abortions once the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. The Arizona Department of Health Services estimates that 13,000 people receive abortions each year in Arizona.