By Dave Andrusko
For now, at least, Planned Parenthood has stopped providing abortions at its Fayetteville, Arkansas abortion clinic. That according to court documents filed last Friday by Brandon Hill, its chief executive officer, according to Arkansas Online’s Linda Satter.
“Hill, chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood Great Plains, which oversees the business’ Little Rock and Fayetteville clinics, cited ‘increasing problems with our landlord’ as reasons for deciding against renewing the current lease, which expires at the end of this month,” Satter reported. “He said Planned Parenthood is considering leasing or buying a new facility” in northwest Arkansas.
But there are many other layers to the action.
The state passed a law requiring abortion providers to be board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology– Act 700. “The documents notified U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker that the provider of abortions and family planning services is withdrawing, for now, from a joint effort to block the enforcement” of the new law, Satter reported. On Monday attorney Bettina Brownstein told Satter that Planned Parenthood is expected to rejoin the effort after the Fayetteville clinic relocates.
Act 700 is one of three new laws pro-abortionists are challenging in their lawsuits. “Baker has scheduled a hearing for July 22 on requests for a temporary restraining order and/or a preliminary injunction” to stop all three from being enforced while their constitutionality is litigated.
Act 700 is “only an issue for the Fayetteville clinic,” Brownstein said. “Planned Parenthood’s Little Rock clinic already has two doctors board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology.”
The two other new laws that are being challenged in a lawsuit filed June 26 by the ACLU of Arkansas are Act 619, which prohibits abortions based solely on a fetal diagnosis of Down syndrome, and “Act 493, which bans abortions in Arkansas after 18 weeks of pregnancy except in medical emergencies and cases of rape or incest,” according to Satter.
“We had previously hoped to restart providing services in a new location with little or no disruption in access to patients,” Hill said. However, he said, the right spot has been difficult to find, “in part because some landlords are unwilling to rent to Planned Parenthood in light of the ongoing high-profile disputes over abortion.”