Health Group Disputes South Dakota 3-Day Abortion Wait

By Staff | May 27, 2011 | 1:13 PM EDT

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — Planned Parenthood has filed a lawsuit challenging a South Dakota law that would require women seeking abortions to wait three days and undergo counseling at pregnancy help centers that discourage abortion.

The three-day waiting period would be the nation's longest.

The new law is scheduled to take effect July 1. Planned Parenthood argues it is unconstitutional because it violates a woman's right to get an abortion. The organization also contends the law violates free-speech rights of women and doctors and interferes with women's privacy.

Supporters say the law is needed to make sure women are not coerced into having abortions.

The law says an abortion could only be scheduled 72 hours after a woman meets with a doctor. She would have to get counseling at a center that discourages abortion.