Austin abortion clinic is first to reopen since Supreme Court ruling


Highlights

Whole Woman’s Health clinic closed its flagship location in Austin in 2013.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the clinic’s favor in a lawsuit over the state’s restrictive abortion law.

The law had closed more than half of the state’s abortion clinics.

Whole Woman’s Health, the abortion clinic that sued the state of Texas over 2013 abortion restrictions and won at the U.S. Supreme Court last year, will reopen its Austin location next month.

The clinic, in Northeast Austin, had closed in 2013 after then-Gov. Rick Perry signed a law that required abortions to be performed in hospital-like surgical centers and that doctors have admitting privileges in nearby hospitals. Whole Woman’s Health challenged those provisions of the law on the grounds that they restricted access to the procedure. Supreme Court justices agreed in a ruling last June.

While the law was being contested in court, more than half of the state’s 41 abortion clinics closed.

“When you close down a clinic, you’re laying off staff, you’re selling equipment, you’re completely getting rid of everything. What we’ve had to do is basically start over,” said Fatimah Gifford, vice president of communications for Whole Woman’s Health.

READ: Texas lawmaker files bill to satirize restrictive abortion laws

Gifford said the Austin location, which is the flagship for the clinic’s seven facilities, will start serving patients in the next three to four weeks.

Whole Woman’s Health will be the first clinic to reopen since the ruling.

Planned Parenthood and Austin Women’s Health Center also provide abortions in Austin.

“When the politically motivated legislature forced the Whole Woman’s Health in District 4 to close, our community suffered a loss. With the reopening of the Austin Whole Woman’s Health clinic, the residents of North Austin and beyond will have expanded access to safe, legal abortion care right here in our community,” Austin Council Member Greg Casar said in a statement.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Texas News & Politics

Happy birthday: Co-workers buy car for fellow employee 
Happy birthday: Co-workers buy car for fellow employee 

A Michigan man will never forget his 19th birthday, thanks to the generosity of his co-workers, WJRT reported. Noah Robinson had been riding his bicycle to work from Saginaw to Kochville Township, pedaling the 6 ½ miles in 45 minutes regardless of the weather conditions. He works in the shipping department at Glastender and lives with his...
Indiana boy carves wooden toys for needy children
Indiana boy carves wooden toys for needy children

A 10-year-old Indiana boy is building toys from scratch to help children in need enjoy the holiday season, WISH reported. Zander Hite of Greenwood took the advice of his grandfather, Darl Hite, who gave the boy a $20 bill last winter and told him to make a difference this holiday season. Zander bought two slabs of wood to build toy cars, WISH...
Former Washington State high school employee accused of rape
Former Washington State high school employee accused of rape

A former employee at a Washington State high school was charged Thursday afternoon with allegedly raping a 15-year-old student. Kristal M. Gamble, 33, was employed as an office assistant at Kent Meridian High School when she allegedly initiated an illegal sexual relationship with a boy last spring. According to Detective Melanie Robinson...
Drug-filled drone crashes at Arizona prison
Drug-filled drone crashes at Arizona prison

A drone crashed at an Arizona prison in September, and officials found drugs and cellphones aboard the vehicle, The Arizona Republic reported.  The drone crashed in a yard accessible only to corrections officers. The Arizona Department of Corrections said Thursday it is still trying to determine who was behind the delivery Sept. 24 delivery...
Cleveland zoo shows off new otter pups
Cleveland zoo shows off new otter pups

Three male otter pups made their public debut at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo on Friday, WKYC reported. Zoo officials said the pups were born on Sept. 24 to Bitzy and Kibble. Baby otters are born with their eyes closed and need a few weeks to learn how to swim, meaning they'll be ready to join their parents, Bitzy and Kibble, on exhibit in The...
More Stories