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PRESS STATEMENT: Supreme Court Decision in Ayotte Reaffirms Need to Protect Women’s Health

Wayne C. Shields, President and CEO
Association of Reproductive Health Professionals (ARHP)

For Immediate Release
January 17,  2006

Ann McCall
(202) 466-3825

ARHP welcomes the decision by the Supreme Court in Ayotte v. Planned Parenthood of Northern New England et al, which reaffirms the protection of women’s health and safety in abortion laws. The Justices unanimously recognized the precedent that laws restricting abortion must include an exception for when women’s health and safely are in danger.

Despite decades of precedence, the New Hampshire parental notification law in question did not include a medical emergency exception to protect the health of young women, which could put them at risk for serious medical complications. By sending the case back to the lower court to revisit portions of the law, the Supreme Court sends a clear message that abortion laws without health exceptions are unconstitutional.

In light of recent and upcoming changes to the Supreme Court, ARHP urges the Justices to continue to uphold this important precedent and continue to protect women’s health and safety.


The Association of Reproductive Health Professionals (ARHP) is the leading source for trusted medical education and information on reproductive and sexual health. ARHP educates health care providers, informs consumers, and helps shape public policy. ARHP is a non-profit membership association composed of highly qualified and committed experts in reproductive health. ARHP members are health professionals in clinical practice, education, research, and advocacy and they include physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurse midwives, researchers, educators, pharmacists, and other professionals in reproductive health. To learn more, visit: