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ADF to Illinois court: Don't allow govt to force health providers to promote abortion

ADF attorney available to media following hearing on state’s request for judge to dismiss lawsuit against abortion referral mandate

Thursday, Mar 30, 2017
WHO:  ADF Legal Counsel Elissa Graves
WHAT:  Available for media interviews following hearing in Pregnancy Care Center of Rockford v. Rauner
WHEN:  Friday, March 31, immediately following hearing, which begins at 1:30 p.m. CDT
WHERE:  Circuit Court of the 17th Judicial Circuit in Winnebago County, 400 W. State St., Courtroom 412, Rockford

ROCKFORD, Ill. – Alliance Defending Freedom Legal Counsel Elissa Graves will be available for media interviews Friday following a state court hearing in a lawsuit filed by an Illinois doctor and two pregnancy care centers against Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner. In December of last year, the medical providers won a temporary injunction against a new law, SB 1564, that forces them to make or arrange abortion referrals, and now they are asking the court to deny the governor’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit.

“Government officials shouldn’t be allowed to force doctors and medical staff to provide free advertising for the abortion industry,” said Graves. “Requiring them to provide patients with lists of abortionists, among other things, violates the legally protected freedoms of our clients, who, as the court found in December, ‘have raised a fair question as to whether their right to be free from government compelled speech has been violated by SB 1564.’ Women shouldn’t lose access to doctors and health staff who unconditionally value human life, and pregnancy care centers offering free help and hope to pregnant women shouldn’t be converted into referral agencies for abortionists.”

SB 1564 compels speech and action in violation of the oaths of health professionals. Specifically…
  • Pro-life doctors and pregnancy centers must tell pregnant women the names of doctors they believe offer abortions.
  • They must tell pregnant women that abortion has unspecified “benefits.”
  • They must tell women that abortion is a “treatment option” for pregnancy.
The lawsuit explains that the law violates pro-life healthcare professionals’ rights under the Illinois Constitution, state statutes, and related court precedents, which expressly protect freedom of conscience and speech.

Mauck & Baker, LLC, attorney Noel Sterett, one of nearly 3,200 private attorneys allied with ADF, is co-counsel on behalf of the health professionals challenging the Illinois law.
  • Pronunciation guide: Sterett (STAIR’-ett)
Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith.
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