A challenge to the Mass. abortion clinic buffer zone law, McCullen et al v Coakley et al, will be heard by the Supreme Court in their October term, 2013. On June 24 the Court granted a writ of certiorari to petitioners who are objecting to the law that keeps protesters 35 feet away from abortion clinics. They are appealing a January 2013 decision by the U. S. Appeals Court.
The U. S. Appeals Court upheld the law in Eleanor McCullen v Martha Coakley et al. "...The right of the state to take reasonable steps to ensure the safe passage of persons wishing to enter healthcare facilities cannot seriously be questioned. The Massachusetts statute at issue here is a content-neutral, narrowly tailored time-place-manner regulation that protects the rights of prospective patients and clinic employees without offending the First Amendment rights of others. We therefore affirm...." The Court affirmed a decision by US District Judge Joseph L. Tauro in February
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