TAMPA, Fla. (Reuters) - A Florida appellate court on Friday ordered the enforcement of a state law that requires women to wait 24 hours before getting an abortion, reversing an injunction imposed last year before it was due to take effect.
A three-judge panel on Florida’s First District Court of Appeal found the temporary injunction, which a lower court imposed in late June, failed to meet legal standards.
The law passed by the Republican-controlled legislature last spring required women seeking abortions in Florida to make two visits to a clinic, with a mandatory 24-hour waiting period in between. Many states have adopted such laws as conservatives seek to chip away at the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision to legalize abortion.
A spokeswoman for Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, a Republican, said the state was pleased with the decision allowing the law to go into effect.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida, involved in challenging the law, said it was reviewing the ruling.
“We are disappointed that the court reached this decision despite the unrebutted evidence that this law poses a real hardship to many Florida women, but will continue to do everything in our power to ensure that this demeaning and intrusive law is stopped in its tracks,” Nancy Abudu, legal director the ACLU of Florida, said in a statement.
Florida is one of 28 states with abortion waiting periods, according to the Guttmacher Institute, which tracks reproductive health policy. Nineteen states mandate a 24-hour delay.
Laws in 14 states, including Florida, also require women to make two trips to a clinic to end a pregnancy, the institute said.
Reporting by Letitia Stein; Editing by Richard Chang