Virginia Health Commissioner Resigns Over Ridiculous New Abortion Clinic Regulations

Illustration for article titled Virginia Health Commissioner Resigns Over Ridiculous New Abortion Clinic Regulations

Virginia Health Commissioner, Dr. Karen Remley, resigned today, citing the state's wack new abortion clinic regulations.


The regulations, which the Board of Health passed in June, originally included a provision that would grandfather in existing clinics, but when Virginia's anti-choice ass hat of an Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli saw the provision, he threatened to make the Board of Health's life a living hell. Instead of fighting the intense Cuccinelli, the Board of Health bent over and submitted. Now, outpatient abortion clinics ridiculously have to meet the same unnecessary, expensive, and ridiculous standards as new hospitals, and if they don't comply within two years, they will be closed.

Remley clearly couldn't take it anymore, and wrote as much in her letter of resignation:

In her resignation letter, Remley writes that "how specific sections of the Virginia Code pertaining to the development and enforcement of these regulations have been and continue to be interpreted has created an environment in which my ability to fulfill my duties is compromised and in good faith I can no longer serve in my role."

So, an important advocate for women's health leaves a powerful governmental position. Not good. Even better (WAY WORSE), none of the 20 clinics have currently meet the regulations inane standards.

Opponents of the regulations, which include minimum hallway widths, specific ventilation systems and covered entrances, argue that they are medically unnecessary and meant for the construction of new hospitals — not as regulations for existing outpatient abortion clinics. None of the 20 clinics in the state that are applying for a new license currently meet the requirements, and in order to come into compliance in the allotted two-year time period they would have to undergo costly, extensive renovations.

Don't worry ladies, it's all for your health and safety.

Remley's Resignation Letter [Richmond Times-Dispatch]
Karen Remley, Virginia Health Commissioner, Resigns Over Abortion Clinic Regulations [Huffington Post]



Ginger, get the popcorn!

I just want to note that the Cooch is running for governor here in 2013. So shit could get so much worse for women in VA soon.

So any lawyerly types know if this kind of specific targeting of abortion clinics could be challenged in court?