LOS ANGELES – City Attorney Mike Feuer today announced his office’s persistent enforcement efforts, in conjunction with the Los Angeles Department of Consumer and Business Affairs, have yielded compliance by the so-called crisis pregnancy centers that were previously found to be in violation of a new state law requiring important disclosures for women seeking key information affecting their reproductive choices.
“I pledged to protect a woman’s right to have accurate information before she makes the most personal and sensitive of choices—and I meant it,” said Feuer. “We will aggressively enforce the FACT Act, taking any action necessary against those who violate it.”
“Women must have accurate information to make informed decisions about their own reproductive health,” said Councilwoman Nury Martinez. “City Attorney Feuer has my full support for seeking and securing compliance from these centers that could willfully keep important information about health and safety from vulnerable women.”
In May, the City Attorney sent letters to reproductive health facilities in Los Angeles, informing them of their legal obligations under California Health and Safety Code Sections 123470-123473, the Reproductive Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care and Transparency Act (Reproductive FACT Act). The FACT Act was intended to assure women are fully informed of the existence of public programs that provide free or low-cost access to family planning services, prenatal care and abortions. According to the law, all licensed facilities that offer family planning or pregnancy-related services are required to post and disseminate information to clients, on-site at the time of check-in or arrival, on services provided as well as alternative accommodations that provide contraception, prenatal care and abortion for eligible women. Facilities offering family planning counseling which are not licensed as medical facilities must disclose that they are unlicensed.
“It’s good to see these centers agree to comply with California law,” said Assemblymember David Chiu (D – San Francisco), who authored the FACT Act last year. “I applaud City Attorney Mike Feuer’s swift enforcement efforts, which will help make sure that women who visit crisis pregnancy centers have access to accurate, unbiased information before making reproductive health decisions.”
As part of their ongoing collaboration with Feuer’s office, investigators from the Los Angeles County Department of Business and Consumer Affairs last month found that one licensed facility and two unlicensed facilities were not complying with the FACT Act. At that time the City Attorney sent notices of violation to the three facilities, advising that they had 30 days in which to cure the violations.
The deadline for the centers to comply with the FACT Act was this past Sunday. On Monday, County investigators returned to the field and found that the licensed facility was still not in compliance. On Tuesday morning, Feuer’s office notified the Court and the center’s legal counsel that he intended to seek a Temporary Restraining Order to compel compliance with the law on Wednesday. On Tuesday afternoon the center’s counsel notified the City Attorney that the center would, in fact, comply with the FACT Act.
“Our work with the City Attorney’s Office ensures that these clinics provide all of the information required by law to assist the public in making important family decisions,” said Brian Stiger, Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Business and Consumer Affairs.