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'We're ready to come together': Kentucky lawyer offers free services after abortion ban

Abortion is now illegal or heavily restricted in 11 U.S. states, including Kentucky. It's why one lawyer is now offering free services.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Eastern Kentucky attorney at law Michelle Lawson is offering to represent anyone prosecuted under Kentucky law for receiving or providing an abortion following the Supreme Court's decision to strike down Roe v. Wade, June 24. 

She shared she would be doing so in a Tweet, which has been seen by tens of thousands of users since it was posted.

"As far as the Tweet goes, I wanted to have a way that I could really help here," Lawson said. "A lot of the times the big news comes out, and you're sort of left feeling like there's nothing that you can really do."

Lawson has been practicing law across Easter Kentucky counties for more than six years. She practices in family law and domestic violence law, working in child support court, adoption court, juvenile court, family court and divorce court, she said.  

"I have spent my entire career working for domestic violence survivors and sexual assault survivors," Lawson said. "And this time, we don't even have a carve-out for survivors in the law. If they were to need an abortion or that kind of reproductive care, they can't get it."

Lawson says that is what drove her to post the Tweet, which as of June 27 has over 30,000 likes and 11,000 retweets. She said since going viral, other lawyers have reached out to her looking to follow in suit.

"I've gotten a lot of responses from other attorneys also offering to help do what they can," she said. "Even if they can't be in person in court, they've offered to help in other ways."

Lawson understands it may be an uphill battle for her and future clients.

"We really have an unjust law here. We have to get ready and expect that there will be cases that come up, where we do have to defend both providers and people seeking an abortion," she said. "My plan with that is to get in court and present these people as individual people making an impossible choice."

Under the Human Life Protection Act, Kentucky's trigger law that went into effect Friday, abortions are prohibited in most circumstances, and no person may knowingly cause or aid people in "the termination of the life on an unborn human being." 

Performing abortions is a Class D felony, but mothers are not subject to any criminal liability according to the advisory.

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