First Choice Women's Resource Centers v. Platkin
Description: First Choice Women’s Resource Centers is a Christian, pro-life, medical nonprofit that serves pregnant mothers, mothers of newborns, and fathers. New Jersey’s attorney general selectively targeted the nonprofit based on its religious speech and pro-life views with a wide-ranging, unfounded, and burdensome subpoena that requires the organization to expend its limited resources to produce extensive documentation or face judicial sanctions. The attorney general does not refer to any substantive evidence of wrongdoing to justify his onerous demands.
Pro-life nonprofit asks 3rd Circuit for relief from NJ attorney general's harassment
The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Lincoln Wilson regarding a notice of appeal ADF attorneys filed last Tuesday in First Choice Women’s Resource Centers v. Platkin to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit after a lower court dismissed the case. In December, Christian, pro-life, medical nonprofit First Choice Women’s Resource Centers sued New Jersey Attorney General Matthew Platkin for selectively targeting it based on its religious speech and pro-life views:
“New Jersey’s attorney general is targeting and harassing First Choice Women’s Resource Centers—a ministry that provides free ultrasounds, STD testing, baby clothes, and more to its community—based on nothing more than their pro-life views. He has aligned himself with Planned Parenthood’s pro-abortion mission and even enlisted its help to target pro-life pregnancy centers like First Choice. The U.S. Constitution protects the ministry from government threats that attempt to shut down its speech and even its ministry because of its religious viewpoint. The First Amendment protects First Choice’s right to freely speak about its beliefs, exercise its faith, associate with like-minded individuals and organizations, and continue to provide its free services in a caring and compassionate environment to people facing difficult pregnancy circumstances. The district court in this case erred by depriving First Choice of its opportunity to present its constitutional claims in federal court. We are urging the 3rd Circuit to reaffirm the authority of the federal courts to end this unlawful harassment.”
ADF attorneys also filed a motion for injunction pending appeal on Tuesday asking the court to halt for the duration of the appeal Platkin’s wide-ranging, unfounded, and burdensome subpoena that requires First Choice to expend its limited resources to produce extensive documentation or face judicial sanctions.
Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.
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Lincoln Wilson serves as senior counsel on the Center for Life Team at Alliance Defending Freedom. Prior to joining ADF, Wilson served as chief of civil litigation and constitutional defense for the Idaho attorney general. Before entering government service, Wilson worked in private practice for several New York law firms, including Skadden Arps, Quinn Emanuel, and Dechert LLP, where he served as counsel. Wilson’s private practice focused on complex class action and products liability litigation in trial and appellate courts around the country. He also maintained an active pro bono practice focusing on religious freedom matters, including a petition for certiorari named a “Petition of the Week” by SCOTUSblog. Wilson earned his J.D. from Seton Hall University School of Law, where he earned the Academic Excellence Award and served as executive editor of the Law Review. He also served as an adjunct professor at the University of Idaho College of Law teaching appellate advocacy and complex litigation. He is admitted to practice in Idaho, Washington, and New York, as well as the U.S. Supreme Court and nine federal courts of appeal.