Ohio Gov. signs bill mandating women cremate or bury remains after abortions

Those who do not comply with the mandate may face criminal prosecution

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This week, Ohio governor Mike DeWine signed a bill that would make women who receive abortions obligated to bury or cremate the remains from the surgical procedure.

“The pregnant woman is responsible for the costs related to the final disposition of the fetal remains at the chosen location,” reads Senate Bill 27, which has now been signed into law.

According to Cincinnati Enquirer, “any zygote, blastocyte, embryo or fetus from a surgical abortion to be buried or cremated. Any woman who obtains an abortion in Ohio would be informed prior to the procedure that she can choose the final disposition of the fetal remains.”

Ohio Mike DeWine thegrio.com
(Credit: DeWine)

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If a woman doesn’t choose a location, the responsibility to do so falls on the abortion facility which would also have to pay for the burial or cremation. If someone chooses not to comply they could be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor which would be punishable by up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine. 

“Not only is Senate Bill 27 unconstitutional and medically unnecessary, it also adds yet another barrier for patients who are trying to access abortion services – which is the legislature’s real goal,” explained Lauren Blauvelt-Copelin, vice president of government affairs and public advocacy at Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio.

Gov. Kasich Campaigns With Ohio Gubernatorial Candidate Mike DeWine In Columbus
.(Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

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To her point, Gov. DeWine has a history of supporting restrictions on access to abortions. But Mike Gonidakis, president of Ohio Right to Life, said the bill is simply an attempt to maintain the dignity of the unborn.

“Whether pro-life or pro-choice, everyone should be able to agree that the bodies’ of babies should never be thrown into the trash,” said Gonidakis. “The unborn victims of abortion deserve the same basic decency that we afford to all humans: a dignified burial.”

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