Yesterday, Gov. Eric Holcomb signed Senate Enrolled Act (SEA) 340 into law. SEA 340 deals with reporting requirements when women are injured by an abortion, abortion facility licensing requirements that create stronger health and safety standards and the expansion of safe haven baby boxes.
SEA 340 requires that physicians, hospitals and abortion facilities report when a woman is injured by an abortion. Complications required to be reported include: uterine perforation, cervical perforation, infection, hemorrhaging, respiratory arrest, shock, or incidents in which parts of an aborted baby are left within the woman. The law also enhances reporting requirements when a woman gets an abortion by tracking whether she was seeking the abortion as a result of abuse, coercion, harassment or trafficking.
The new law tightens the process for abortion facility licensing by requiring that applicants disclose whether it has operated an abortion facility that was closed due to health and safety concerns, whether a principal or staff members have been convicted of a felony, and whether a principal or staff member were ever employed by a facility owned or operated by the applicant that closed as a result of administrative or legal action.
The law also expands the use of safe haven baby boxes. Under the law, baby boxes can be installed at Indiana fire departments, including volunteer fire departments, that are staffed around-the-clock by an emergency medical services provider.
Mike Fichter, President and CEO of Indiana Right to Life issued the following statement upon Holcomb’s signing SEA 340 into law:
“This important pro-life law ensures abortion complications don’t get swept under the rug. Hoosier women deserve better. We don’t want to see anyone injured by the abortion industry. The law also recognizes that abortions are too often the result of coercion, abuse and trafficking, and it starts the process to correct those injustices.
“We believe abortion facilities must be held to the highest accountability by our lawmakers. SEA 340 attempts to make the licensing process more transparent so that community members know what type of business is trying to do abortions in their town. Hoosiers have no patience for abortion operators targeting their communities and prioritizing profits over women.
“Finally, this new law expands the life-saving Safe Haven law. We never want a mother to feel so desperate that giving up her newborn seems like her only option, but a surrender at a Safe Haven site is a far better alternative to illegal abandonment. Baby boxes give babies a future.
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“We commend Gov. Holcomb for protecting Hoosier women and the unborn. His signature increases Indiana’s reputation as a pro-life state. We will continue to work with lawmakers to advance the cause of life in Indiana.”