Arizona Supreme Court upholds 1864 law banning nearly all abortions

This week Arizona's Supreme Court voted to uphold a law from 1864 that bans all abortions, with no exceptions for rape or incest, unless the pregnant person’s life is threatened. The ruling makes abortion a felony punishable by two to five years in prison for anyone who performs an abortion or helps a pregnant person obtain one. Despite this ruling, enforcement of the decision has been put on hold for a minimum of 14 days. The ruling has sparked conversation on social media, with some users expressing frustration that the 1864 law existed “before Arizona became a state” and others expressing confusion about whether or not the ruling is “final.”


Articles and social media posts about this decision may cause confusion about current abortion laws in Arizona and in other states. Messaging may emphasize that the Arizona Supreme Court’s ruling is not currently enforceable, so abortion at up to 15 weeks of pregnancy is still legal in the state. Staying up to date on trending narratives and preparing for questions about abortion laws in your state—as well as ensuring that FAQ sheets and public-facing websites are updated with the latest information about local abortion laws—is recommended.