Nebraska judge allows abortion limits and restrictions on gender-affirming surgery

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Planned Parenthood of the Heartland has appealed a judge’s ruling that left a new Nebraska law intact that bans abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy and imposes restrictions on gender-affirming surgery.

Planned Parenthood filed its appeal Friday with help from the American Civil Liberties Union of Nebraska, one week after a judge sided with the state and rejected the challenge to the law Nebraska lawmakers approved earlier this year.

The lawsuit had argued that the law violated a Nebraska constitutional rule that bills cannot contain more than one subject, but the judge disagreed. Lawmakers added the abortion ban to an existing bill dealing with gender-related care.

The law outlaws abortion after 12 weeks of pregnancy with exceptions for rape, incest and to save the life of the mother. As of Oct. 1, it also will prevent people under 19 from receiving gender-affirming surgery and restricts the use of hormone treatments and puberty blockers for minors.

Ruth Richardson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood North Central States, said her organization “will never stop fighting for the reproductive freedom, bodily autonomy and health of our Nebraska communities.”

Richardson said Planned Parenthood will continue to provide abortions to women up to the 12th week of pregnancy in compliance with state law, and it will work with anyone who needs care later in pregnancy to find treatment in another state.

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