The First Amendment challenge to the California law requiring all licensed pregnancy centers to provide information on state run programs that provide abortions has been picked up by the Supreme Court.
The Reproductive FACT Act prohibits clinics from providing misleading information about the services they offer to women to deter them from using contraception or abortion services.
I stand ready to defend California's Reproductive FACT Act in #SCOTUS! The FACT Act requires that the advisory appear in large font in a "conspicuous place" within the clinic. The law requires centers "whose primary goal is providing family planning or pregnancy-related services" to post a notice, which reads: "California has public programs that provide immediate free or low-priced access to comprehensive family planning services (including all FDA-approved methods of contraception), prenatal care, and abortion for eligible women". "To determine whether you qualify, contact the county social services office at [phone number]". "But what we would hope for is a ruling that does protect and ensure that women should be able to get the full range of reproductive health services, and that crisis pregnancy centers aren't in a position of being able to lie to them". "This is especially true of pregnancy care centers, which exist to care for women who want to have their babies".
According to the State of California, more than half of pregnancies in the state are unintended. As such, the clinics say they are forced to chose between promoting abortion and subsidizing abortion through the state. Jerry Brown. The Ninth Circuit US Court of Appeals in San Francisco, considered the most liberal appeals court in the nation, ruled against the centers past year. The Supreme Court is more likely to hear a case when circuit courts "split" or reach different conclusions on the same question.
The case presents a clash between the state's power to regulate the medical profession and the Constitution's protection for the freedom of speech.
In the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v. Xavier Becerra case, the plaintiffs sought a preliminary injunction to prohibit enforcement of the Reproductive FACT Act, claiming that it violated their First Amendment free speech rights by compelling them to utter a government message. On Dec. 5, the justices will hear the case of the Colorado baker who refuses to make a wedding cake for a same-sex marriage and was charged with violating the state's civil rights law.