Missouri House Panel OKs Bill for Waiting Period, Stopping Forced Abortions
by Steven Ertelt
February 26, 2010
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — A Missouri state House committee voted 7-5 on a party line vote yesterday for a bill that would stop forced abortions and put a 24-hour abortion waiting period in place. The measure is designed to provide women more information than they otherwise receive from abortion centers.
The Special Standing Committee on Children and Families signed off on House Bill 1327, sponsored by Republican Cynthia Davis of O’Fallon, and urged the full state House to support it.
The measure requires abortion businesses, orally and in writing, to provide women information 24 hours before an abortion on the development of the unborn child, and long-term medical and mental health problems women can expect from the abortion.
The measure also allows women to find out about abortion alternatives and to see an ultrasound of the unborn child, according to a Missouri Statehouse Examiner report.
HB 1327 also makes it unlawful for a woman’s family, friends, workplace or school to coerce her into having an abortion and to require abortion centers to place posters in their waiting rooms informing women they have the right to not have an abortion.
In a post placed on her web site, Davis, who chairs the committee, said women should be given more information about abortion and its alternatives and problematic aftereffects.
"The new safeguards added to our laws help women by making sure they have all the necessary information to enforce their choices," Davis writes. "Women who are in a vulnerable position deserve access to all the relevant facts."
The Examiner indicated Jill Schupp, a St. Louis Democrat on the committee, was one of the main opponents of the pro-woman bill.
She claimed, "[HB 1327] is unquestionably designed to further intimidate and shame the woman who is making a decision to terminate the pregnancy."
Davis was behind a similar bill last year that the House approved. The Senate passed a similar measure but neither chamber would relent on whether the bill should be applied to all abortion centers or just those open one day a week.
Pam Fichter, the president of Missouri Right to Life, told LifeNews.com that the Senate bill last year "endangers Missouri women seeking abortions."
The Senate bill "creates a two-tiered system of enforcement based on how frequently an abortion clinic does abortions," Fichter explained then.
"Abortion clinics that perform abortions no more than one-day-a-week (supposedly only the Planned Parenthood clinic in Columbia, Mo.) are exempt from the new informed consent provisions offering an ultrasound, fetal development information, abortion alternatives, etc. for three years," she said.
"But such one-day-a-week clinics must (supposedly) comply with the old, 2003 womens right to know law," Fichter said. "Clinics that perform abortions more than one-day-a-week (one in Kansas City and two in St. Louis) will be exempt from the 2003 law while (supposedly) complying with the new law."
Fichter says this uneven enforcement will come up in court and cause even more problems.
Related web sites
Missouri Right to Life – https://www.missourilife.org
Missourians United for Life – https://www.missouriansunitedforlife.org
Missouri Legislature – https://www.moga.mo.gov
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