Abortion disclosure laws and the first amendment: The broader public health implications of the supreme Court's becerra decision

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In 2018, the US Supreme Court analyzedaCalifornia staterequirement that clinics serving pregnant women must provide government notices-1 for licensedclinics about theavailability of state health services including abortion and 1 for unlicensed clinics, notifying potential clients that the clinics are not licensed medical facilities and have no licensed medical professionals on-site. The Supreme Court found that both notices violated the First Amendment rights of the clinics. The Supreme Court's opinion elicits new uncertainties about the government's ability to require the disclosure of factual information in the context of reproductive health services and more broadly in the commercial context. However, the Supreme Court's silence on 1 of the state's purposes for theunlicensed clinic notice,which was to address deceptive speech by the clinics, highlights a potential avenue for future regulation. Policymakers can require the disclosure of factual information in the commercial context specifically to prevent consumer deception consistent with the First Amendment. Public health researchers can generate evidence to support such disclosure requirements intended to protect health and safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)412-418
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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