The Utah Senate passed a bill Tuesday to ensure that abortion facilities properly dispose of aborted babies bodies.
Utah Senate Bill 67, sponsored by state Sen. Curt Bramble, R-Provo, requires medical and abortion facilities to bury or cremate the remains of aborted and miscarried babies. It requires facilities to give women information about the disposal of their babies and allow them to choose their babies’ final disposition. The bill also prohibits facilities from cremating “fetal remains with other biological, infectious, or pathological waste.”
The legislation passed Tuesday in a 22-6 vote with the six “no” votes cast by Democrat lawmakers. It now moves to the state House for consideration.
Deseret News reports Bramble wants to make sure medical facilities treat the remains of aborted and miscarried babies with dignity.
“Right now unborn fetus are thrown out like rubbish. They are thrown out with the medical waste,” he said. “If that unborn child is worthy of protection, if their life is worthy of protection — which I believe that it is — then when that life is terminated it should be treated with respect.”
The Salt Lake Tribune reports Bramble also criticized “the left” for refusing to recognize that babies are valuable human beings before birth as well as after.
Abortion advocacy groups lobbied against the legislation, claiming it is unnecessary and burdensome.
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In Utah, fetal remains are now turned over to processors who handle disposal of human tissue or other medical waste. The state’s Planned Parenthood chapter says that method is safe and effective. They argue a woman could request remains be cremated or buried instead under current law.
“We fully support women who have had a miscarriage or abortion to make whatever choice is right for them in the aftermath of that experience,” said Lauren Simpson with a left-leaning group that opposes the bill, Alliance for a Better Utah, in a statement. But “the true purpose of this bill is to chip away at women’s reproductive rights.”
Bramble’s bill is similar to an Indiana law that the U.S. Supreme Court upheld in 2019. The court ruled that requiring a proper burial for aborted babies is not an undue burden on women’s access to abortion.
The Pennsylvania House passed a similar bill in 2019, but pro-abortion Gov. Tom Wolf threatened to veto it. The bill drew national attention after state Rep. Wendy Ullman, a pro-abortion Democrat who opposed the legislation, described a miscarried baby as “just some mess on a napkin.”
Texas leaders are fighting to defend a similar burial law in court in their state.
At the federal level, U.S. Sen. Mike Braun recently introduced the Dignity for Aborted Children Act, which would require abortion facilities all across the country to bury or cremate the remains of aborted babies.
States are very limited in their ability to protect unborn babies from abortion under Roe v. Wade. The infamous ruling made America one of only seven countries in the world that allows elective abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Since it was handed down in 1973, more than 61 million babies have been aborted.
While states fight to pass pro-life laws and defend them in court, these burial/cremation requirements at least provide dignity to aborted babies after their deaths. Such legislation also helps to ensure that abortion facilities are not profiting off the sales of aborted baby body parts.
Additionally, these burial/cremation laws can help prevent situations like the recent gruesome discoveries in Indiana. Last fall, authorities found the remains of more than 2,400 unborn babies stored in a vehicle and garage owned by the late abortionist Ulrich Klopfer.