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Archdiocese Of Baltimore Sues City Over Pro-Life Abortion Centers

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By Sanaz Meshkinpour

U.S. District court Judge Marvin Garbis has heard arguments in a lawsuit that claims Baltimore is violating the First Amendment rights of pro-life pregnancy centers. But Garbis did not make a ruling in the case.

Last November, Baltimore passed an ordinance requiring pregnancy centers to post disclaimers if they don't provide abortions or contraception.

Baltimore's Archdiocese sued the city, claiming the law tries to regulate free speech and it singles out the pro-life pregnancy centers, not pro-choice ones.

Sean Caine, Communications Director of the Archdiocese, says the law forces centers to say they don't provide birth control, when they actually do.

"They provide education on abstinence," says Caine. "They also provide information about natural family planning, which are both medically recognized as forms of birth control."

During the hearing, Judge Garbis raised questions about the wording of the Baltimore law. But he said he thinks a woman walking into a pregnancy clinic should know right away that the center doesn't refer for abortions.

The city wants the lawsuit dismissed-stating that it doesn't want pregnant women to be misled.

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