Ohio Law Allowing Women to See Ultrasound Before Abortion Goes Into Effect

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 20, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Ohio Law Allowing Women to See Ultrasound Before Abortion Goes Into Effect

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by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
June 20
, 2008

Columbus, OH (LifeNews.com) — A new Ohio law saying abortion practitioners must give the woman an opportunity to view the active ultrasound image of the unborn child went into effect on Friday. The measure is another effort to give women information on fetal development they don’t normally receive before an abortion.

Sponsored by Rep. Shannon Jones, Ohio’s Ultrasound Viewing Option Law allowed women an image of the ultrasound if done prior to the abortion.

When used in pregnancy centers, ultrasounds help persuade most women to seek abortion alternatives and Ohio pro-life lawmakers and groups hope the bill will help reduce abortions further.

Governor Ted Strickland strongly supports abortion yet he signed the bill into law in March after the House approved it on a 73-20 margin and the Senate follow suit voting 24-8.

"We are delighted that Ohio has adopted this common sense pro-life and pro-woman law," Mike Gonidakis, the director of Ohio Right to Life, told LifeNews.com on Friday.

"Since women sometimes regret their abortions after later seeing an ultrasound of an unborn baby, this law will help some women avoid the emotional trauma of learning the truth about abortion too late," he explained.

"Just as x-rays are commonly shown to patients deciding on surgery, letting a woman see an ultrasound can help her make a more informed choice, and an uninformed choice is no choice at all", Gonidakis added.

The governor may also have signed the bill because pro-abortion groups took no position on it — claiming abortion centers already give women the option to view an ultrasound.

"We made a decision not to oppose or support it," Kellie Copeland, executive director of NARAL’s Ohio affiliate, told the Cincinnati Enquirer. "It’s a bit silly and unnecessary to pass a law requiring clinics to do something that they already do."

Mary Spaulding Balch, a pro-life attorney who is the director of state legislation for National Right to Life, tells LifeNews.com that abortion rates will continue to decline as more states put these ultrasound provisions in place.

"This bill is reflective of a national trend that recognizes the ability of ultrasound technology to provide mothers with the opportunity to see the development of their unborn child in real-time," she said.

Balch said the bill does a good job at giving women contemplating an abortion the kind of information abortion businesses don’t normally give them.

According to National Right to Life, other states have similar laws in place. Those include Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Michigan, Oklahoma, South Dakota Utah and Wisconsin.

Related web sites:
Ohio Right to Life – https://www.ohiolife.org

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