NIFLA v. Becerra (U.S. Supreme Court, 2018)

Civil Liberties

U.S. Supreme Court ,

Civil Liberties

At issue in this case is California’s Reproductive Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care and Transparency Act (FACT) Act, which was enacted in 2015, to regulate the state’s 300-plus Crisis Pregnancy Centers (“CPCs”). The law requires some licensed and unlicensed CPCs to post notices inside clinics indicating how women can access prenatal care, family planning, and abortion. In addition, it requires unlicensed centers to notify patients that they don’t have a California medical license. A number of CPC’s challenged this law arguing that it violated their right to free speech and free exercise of religion under the First Amendment. The District Court and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals disagreed. At the U.S. Supreme Court, ADL joined a brief led by the National Women’s Law Center and Center for Reproductive Rights along with 50 other reproductive justice, civil rights and social justice organizations focusing on the deceptive tactics of CPCs and their significant harm to women — especially women struggling to make ends meet. The tactics employed by CPCs are intentionally designed to misinform and dissuade women from accessing their constitutional right to an abortion. The brief includes stories from women across the country who have been misled by CPCs. The brief argues that the required disclosures under the FACT Act are constitutional under the court’s context-based standard for evaluating compelled speech because the Act is a neutral, factual disclosure tailored to ensure women seeking reproductive healthcare in California have accurate information.