The ACLU of Georgia filed a challenge to Georgia's policy of denying medicaid coverage for medically necessary abortions on behalf of the Feminist Women's Health Center. Georgia's policy only permited medicaid funding for abortions when the pregnancy is a result of rape or incest or when the pregnancy is a threat to the woman’s life.

There are many instances where abortion is medically necessary, but not a threat to the life of the woman (sickle cell disease, epilepsy, schizophrenia, etc.). The exclusion of funds for these abortions violates the broad guarantees of privacy and equal protection found in the Georgia Constitution. The ACLU of Georgia asked the state of Georgia to join thirteen other states that have found that such discrimination violates their state's constitution.

Instead of reaching the merits of the case, the Georgia Superior Court dismissed the case on procedural grounds. It stated that the Plaintiffs lacked standing to bring the challenge, and that the Plaintiffs should have exhausted their administrative remedies first.

The ACLU of Georgia appealed that decision to the State Supreme Court, who reversed the lower court and ruled that the plaintiffs could pursue their claims despite asserting the rights of third parties.

Feminist Women's Health Center v. Burgess Georgia Supreme Court Decision

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