Celebrating 125 Years

Lectures & Events

August 2017
Chautauqua Institution
This is a multi-day event
October 2017
CWRU Law School
This is a multi-day event
February 2018
CWRU Law School
This is a multi-day event
June 2018
CWRU Law School
This is a multi-day event
Sneaking Around the Constitution: Pretextual “Health” Laws and the Future of Roe v. Wade
Oliver C. Schroeder, Jr. Scholar-in-Residence Lecture
SEP 24, 2015
4:30 PM - 5:30 PM
Moot Courtroom (A59)
CLE Credit
Approved for 1 hour of in-person CLE credit

The Eleventh Circuit’s recent opinion in Wollschlaeger v. Governor of Florida, which upheld a state law banning doctors from discussing gun ownership with patients, will be used to frame this panel on doctor-patient speech. Wollschlaeger serves as the Eleventh Circuit’s contribution to an ongoing judicial inquiry: what degree of First Amendment scrutiny should apply when a state restricts a doctor’s speech to a patient? In the abortion context, the panel will address mandatory ultrasound laws and informed consent requirements. Most recently, the 4th Circuit found that North Carolina’s mandatory ultrasound law constitutes ideological compelled speech violative of the First Amendment, although other courts have differed. In some health contexts, courts have rejected a heightened scrutiny analysis altogether; In Pickup v. Brown, the 9th Circuit applied rational basis scrutiny to California’s ban on “gay conversion therapy,” finding that the “therapy” at issue is a professional practice and not constitutionally protected speech. This panel will address the varied nature and role of speech between doctor and patient. Panelists will debate what we are seeing in the jurisprudence in this area, as well as how courts should understand physician speech in the regulatory context.
Speaker Information
Nancy Northup

Nancy Northup
President and CEO
Center for Reproductive Rights

Nancy Northup is President and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights, a global human rights organization has documented rights abuses, brought groundbreaking cases before national courts, U.N. committees, and regional human rights bodies, and built the legal capacity of women's rights advocates in over 55 countries.

Under her leadership, the Center’s game changing litigation and advocacy work, combined with its unparalleled expertise in the use of constitutional, international, and comparative human rights law, have transformed how reproductive rights are understood by courts, governments, and human rights bodies. It has played a key role in securing legal victories in the U.S., Latin America, Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, and Eastern Europe on issues including access to life-saving obstetrics care, contraception, safe abortion services, and comprehensive sexuality information, as well as the prevention of forced sterilization and child marriage.

Before joining the Center in 2003, Ms. Northup was the founding director of the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, served as a prosecutor and Deputy Chief of Appeals in U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York, and clerked for Judge Alvin B. Rubin on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Ms. Northup has taught courses in constitutional and human rights law at Columbia and NYU law schools.

She received her J.D. from Columbia Law School, where she was a Kent Scholar and managing editor of the Columbia Law Review. A frequent public speaker, Ms. Northup is quoted widely in the national press and has appeared on ABC World News Tonight, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, CNN, FOX News, PBS, MSNBC and NPR.
Additional Information
Register at the door
Free & open to the public

Browse Lectures
Current LecturesPast Lectures

Get the latest news from CWRU Law directly to your inbox