Status: 04.09.2021 10:46 a.m.
The so-called Heartbeat Act is the strictest abortion law in the United States – and highly controversial. The organization Planned Parenthood has now obtained an injunction before a Texas court.
In the heated argument over the rigid abortion law in the US state of Texas, women’s rights activists have achieved a stage victory. The organization Planned Parenthood obtained an injunction before a Texas court. Planned Parenthood advocates sexual education, advises on family planning and operates abortion clinics.
The injunction is directed against the anti-abortion organization Texas Right to Life, which wants to enforce the new, strict regulations and restrict the powers of clinics. The injunction now temporarily protects abortion clinics in Texas under the law because both Texas Right to Life and 100 unnamed individuals cannot file lawsuits.
Exceptions only for medical emergencies
The background is the so-called heartbeat law, which came into force on Wednesday. It is the strictest abortion law in the United States and prohibits abortion from the point at which the fetus’s heartbeat can be determined, i.e. from about the sixth week of pregnancy. There is only an exception for medical emergencies.
At the time, many women do not even know that they are pregnant. Planned Parenthood had stated in the court application that around 85 to 90 percent of pregnant women who would have an abortion in Texas had been pregnant for at least six weeks.
Another controversial aspect of the law is that citizens are encouraged to sue those they suspect of helping women with an abortion after the sixth week. This could affect abortion clinics or their employees, for example, but also relatives of pregnant women or a taxi driver who takes the woman to the clinic. Plaintiffs, if convicted, will receive $ 10,000 payable by the convict.
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Lyft, Uber and Tinder want to protect employees
The driver service providers Lyft and Uber had previously announced that they would pay legal fees for their drivers if they were sued for driving women to abortion clinics, for example. Drivers are never responsible for “monitoring where their passengers are going or why,” Lyft said. The company has set up a fund to cover 100 percent of such costs for employees.
Lyft also said it would donate $ 1 million to Planned Parenthood. The law is “an attack on the right of women to decide”.
Uber chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi responded in a tweet to Lyft’s announcement, saying his company would have a similar regime for its drivers. “Drivers shouldn’t be exposed to the risk of getting people where they want to go,” Khosrowshahi tweeted.
The executive of Match Group, which owns the Tinder app, announced that it would set up a fund for Texas-based employees who would need to have an abortion outside of Texas. The boss Shar Dubey set up the fund independently of the company, so Match Group.