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After six years, IL pro-life pregnancy centers get day in court

ADF attorneys available for media interviews following hearing Wednesday – Friday
Kathy Sparks, president and CEO of a thriving pregnancy care center, has spent 34 years helping more than 20,000 clients. But Kathy wasn’t always pro-life.

WHO: Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys

WHAT: Available for media interviews following hearing in National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v. Treto

WHEN: Immediately following each hearing of three-day trial, which begins at 9:30 a.m. CDT, Wednesday, Sept. 20, and is expected to conclude Friday, Sept. 22

WHERE: U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Stanley J. Roszkowski U. S. Courthouse, 327 S. Church St., Rockford. To schedule an interview, contact ADF Media Relations Manager Bernadette Tasy at (480) 356-0324.

ROCKFORD, Ill. – Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys representing the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates, three pro-life pregnancy centers, and a doctor and her medical practice in a lawsuit against the state of Illinois will be available for media interviews following oral arguments taking place Wednesday through Friday before the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Clients represented by ADF will be on the stand on the first day of the three-day trial.

In 2016, Illinois enacted SB 1564, a law that forces pro-life doctors and pregnancy centers to promote abortion, regardless of their ethical or moral views. It requires pro-life pregnancy centers, medical facilities, and physicians who conscientiously object to involvement in abortions to adopt policies that provide women who ask for abortions with a list of providers “they reasonably believe may offer” them. A federal court issued an injunction to halt enforcement of the law in 2017, which has stood for six years.

“No one should be forced to express a message that violates their convictions,” said ADF Senior Counsel Kevin Theriot, who will be arguing before the court on behalf of the pregnancy centers and doctor. “The government can’t compel medical professionals to choose between violating the law and violating the Hippocratic Oath to do no harm. Illinois’s law targets pro-life pregnancy centers and doctors specifically because they conscientiously object to abortion. The U.S. Supreme Court recently held that forcing people to promote abortion is unconstitutional in NIFLA v. Becerra. We urge the court to finally put this issue to rest and allow pro-life pregnancy centers to continue their life-affirming work without fear of government punishment.”

  • Pronunciation guide: Theriot (TAIR’-ee-oh)

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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Kevin Theriot
Kevin Theriot
Senior Counsel
Kevin Theriot serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom