Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has signed into law a new pro-life bill recognizing the humanity of unborn babies killed in abortions.
The legislation requires the Ohio Department of Health to establish rules for the proper and humane burial or cremation of unborn babies who are killed in abortions. It creates penalties for violations and requires abortion facilities to pay for the babies to be cremated or buried.
Such laws not only ensure that aborted babies’ bodies are treated with dignity and respect, they also are a safeguard against abortion facilities trying to sell aborted baby body parts.
The Unborn Child Dignity Act will promote the dignity of the unborn through proper burial by requiring the Ohio Department of Health to establish rules for the proper disposal of products of conception and define “humane disposal” as earthly burial or cremation.
“After years of hard work and dedication, the Unborn Child Dignity Act has finally been signed into law,” said Mike Gonidakis, President of Ohio Right to Life. “No longer will the tiny bodies of babies whose lives have been tragically taken by abortion be treated like trash. In Ohio, we respect life and we bury our dead. The abortion industry, who has for decades tried to convince women that the lives of their children don’t matter and should simply be thrown away, will now be unable to hide behind this blatant lie.”
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The Unborn Child Dignity Act was first introduced in 2016, following an investigation by then Attorney General Mike DeWine into Planned Parenthood’s surgical abortion facility practices in Ohio. The investigation found that Planned Parenthood’s Ohio locations had been dumping the bodies of aborted babies in landfills.
However, since the Ohio Revised Code did not define “humane” disposal, the state of Ohio was unable to take legal action.
“Ohio Right to Life is incredibly proud to see this vital piece of pro-life legislation signed into law,” said Gonidakis. “Human life is precious and deserves to be both respected and protected. No child’s broken body should be thrown into the trash. The Unborn Child Dignity Act is a crucial step forward towards ending Planned Parenthood’s calloused treatment of human life.”
Ohio Right to Life thanks Governor DeWine and Senator Joe Uecker for their strong pro-life leadership.
Pro-abortion groups lobbied against the bill, claiming it would just shame women and abortion workers. NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio executive director Kellie Copeland argued that the legislation could “put lives at risk” by limiting access to abortion – even though abortions do not save lives, they destroy them.
Pro-life state lawmakers introduced similar legislation in 2015, after the release of viral undercover videos in which top officials at Planned Parenthood were caught discussing the trade of aborted baby body parts. Later, the Ohio Attorney General’s office discovered that Planned Parenthoods in Ohio contract with waste disposal companies that deposit the remains of aborted babies in landfills.
Neighboring Indiana passed a similar law when Vice President Mike Pence served as governor and later won a victory at the Supreme Court in 2019.
The Indiana law established rules about how abortion facilities must dispose of aborted babies. It allows the pregnant woman to choose a different method at her own expense. According to testimony, the Indianapolis Planned Parenthood facility was disposing of aborted babies down a drain into the sewer system; in response, the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) implemented emergency disposal rules but they were blocked.