3 Jewish women file lawsuit against Kentucky abortion law

The plaintiffs said the ban, which defines human life as beginning at conception, violates Jewish law.
The plaintiffs said the ban, which defines human life as beginning at conception, violates Jewish law.
Published: Oct. 6, 2022 at 5:57 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Three Jewish women are suing against Kentucky’s abortion law for the first time publicly.

They claim it violates their religious freedom and puts their lives in Jeopardy.

The suit, filed on behalf of Lisa Sobel, Jessica Kalb and Sarah Baron was filed against Attorney General Daniel Cameron and Jefferson County Commonwealth Attorney Thomas Wine.

The plaintiffs said Kentucky’s abortion laws puts them in a legal “gray area”. They said the abortion laws prevents them from “having children, endangers their lives and could possibly put them in prison.”

The press conference was held at Louisville Urban League Thursday.

She said it took her and her husband five years to conceive their only daughter. Sobel said she and her husband suffer from medical conditions. The only way they could get pregnant was through in vitro fertilization, or IVF, a medical procedure where an egg is combined with sperm in a test tube or outside the body.

Sobel said she still had a tumultuous and terrifying pregnancy; and credits the medical care she received with saving her life during birth.

”I asked God not to take me from my husband and my child. I didn’t want to die,” Plaintiff Lisa Sobel said. “And then the last thing I heard was my doctor saying get her under, we are losing her.” What I remember most from those moments was turning to my dula and saying I need you to stay with my husband and my child. They are going to need you if I don’t make It.”

An option to have medical aid and to use IVF, Sobel said was taken away from her after Roe V. Wade was overturned, in lane June. The plaintiffs say the ban, which defines human life as beginning at conception, violates Jewish law. Kentucky’s current abortion laws also have no exceptions for mental health of the mother. Jewish law says a woman’s health takes precedence over an unborn fetus.

Jessica Kalb said because of the abortion law and her struggles with IVF, she and her husband have chosen not to have more children.

”Now my greatest fear is that I become pregnant, and I go to a scan. And they say your baby is incompatible with life and we can’t help you; because that is the reality right now in our state,” Kalb said.

The suit notes it isn’t uncommon for fertilized eggs to be discarded during IVF and questions whether discarding those eggs could be considered a capital offense under Kentucky law.

”I can not risk getting pregnant, because if I have a miscarriage, I could bleed out while a team of lawyers and doctors fight over whether or not I receive care,” Sobel said.

Attorney General Daniel Cameron responded in a statement saying quote:

“Although we have not received the complaint, I am committed to defending Kentucky’s pro-life laws. The General Assembly has made it clear Kentucky will protect unborn life and these laws are an important part of the Commonwealth.”

Kentucky’s supreme court will hear arguments on November 15 in Frankfort, one week after voters will weigh in on the constitutional amendment regarding abortion in the state.