Indiana House considers fetal remains bill


INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — As the Indiana House prepares for a third reading on the Fetal Remains bill, we are clearing up some misconceptions about the proposal.

This bill allows women to decide whether to bring remains to a clinic after taking an abortion pill.

The measure does not require a woman to do this but it does require the facility to cremate or bury the remains if that is what the woman wants.

Those in favor say it gives women more options but those opposed argue this could sway someone away from an abortion or shame them.

“There’s no burden at all on the woman who is having the abortion. It doesn’t prevent the woman from having the abortion, it allows her to make a choice of where and how she would like the remains disposed of,” said the bill’s author, Senator Liz Brown of Fort Wayne.

“That’s just ridiculous,” said Democratic Senator Jean Breaux. “No one is going to do that and to require the physician to give you that, to offer you that option, it’s just making you feel guilt.”

There is no data on how many women would choose to take the remains back to a clinic after taking an abortion pill. However, Right to Life says there is data that suggests they might.

“We have had women that have called hospitals and police, we have had women that have tried to flush the babies and it has clogged up the sewer and then police have been called, we have police reports on that,” explained Right to Life Lobbyist, Jodi Smith. “So, yes, it does happen and certainly, it is up to the woman.”

Sen. Breaux doesn’t believe the bill should be called “Fetal” remains.

“Because this is an embryo and hasn’t actually formed into a fetus,” said Breaux.

“I would have to disagree with her on that because science proves beyond a shadow of a doubt, earlier babies may be less visible but we have heard from women even at six and seven weeks that they have been able to tell that it was a baby,” said Smith.

“It’s disturbing when we talk about babies remains as blood clots and heavy periods because quite frankly, you are denigrating the loss of any woman who has had a miscarriage that is a baby that they lost, so I think we need to be respectful of these women,” said Brown.

Breaux believes this law doesn’t respect women.

“To shame women, to bully women via a legislative format just is wrong,” said Breaux.

“I don’t see where there is shame,” responded Smith. “I see where there is choice.”

If this bill is approved by both the House and Senate, it will head to the Governor’s desk for consideration.

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