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Pro-life, women's health, Arkansas general assembly, accommodations for young mothers


In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Org., the State of Arkansas was swift in restricting almost all abortions in the Natural State. Arkansas’s decision was met with plaudits from its supporters and reproval by its dissenters. In this unchartered legal territory, Arkansas’s 94th General Assembly—the first legislative session in the wake of Dobbs—has passed and proposed several bills that would provide pregnant and postpartum mothers and their children with medical and financial assistance. Specifically, these bills would provide pregnant and new mothers with health screenings, help high school-aged parents graduate, and require insurance coverage for a variety of postpartum health initiatives. This article is not a discussion of Dobbs’ legal or political merits. Rather, it discusses the current and developing legal landscape in Arkansas, examines what these bills aim to accomplish, and flags the areas that may have unanticipated legal consequences.