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Sweeping anti-abortion bill receives final passage

Kentucky State Capitol
Posted at 5:34 PM, Mar 29, 2022

FRANKFORT, Ky. (LEX 18) — A bill that would ban abortion medication by mail, among other restrictions, received final passage in the General Assembly despite pro-choice advocates and reproductive allies rallying at the Capitol on Tuesday.

Earlier in March, the Kentucky House voted to pass House Bill 3. The bill focuses on a variety of topics, which include:

  • Restricting access to abortion-related medications
  • Publishing the names of physicians that provide medication abortion and creates a state-run "complaint portal"
  • Creating more barriers for minors trying to access abortion care
  • Prohibiting health care facilities from safely and respectfully handling fetal remains in accordance with accepted medical standards and practice
  • Expanding existing restrictions on public funding for organizations that perform—or even counsel or refer for—abortions.

The bill passed in the Senate with additional pro-life provisions, including one that creates a new section of the bill that prohibits an abortion when the gestational age is 15 weeks or older.

"I am very thankful that Senate leadership has added measures to this crucial piece of pro-life legislation," said Representative Nancy Tate of Brandenburg. "We currently have one of the most pro-life caucuses in Kentucky’s history, and we are working every day to protect the unborn."

ACLU-Kentucky shared how they believe HB3 "is designed to push a safe and effective method of abortion care out of reach, shame and ostracize patients, and make the process of seeking and providing abortion care so difficult that patients will forgo care and providers may be forced to close their doors."

"The final passage of House Bill 3 demonstrates abject ignorance of medical science and is a dangerous effort to push important reproductive healthcare out of reach for all Kentuckians, regardless of their circumstances. "

The Kentucky House Majority Caucus called the bill "one of the most significant pro-life bills in a generation."

"Our approach with HB 3 is grounded in not only fact, but also compassion and a genuine concern for public health," said Tate. "This bill would ensure that women have the information they need to make one of the most difficult decisions of their lives. "We're seeing an unprecedented increase in the use of abortion-inducing drugs and know that complications can arise from taking a tablet or capsule at home without the appropriate conversations between a doctor and a patient."

An amendment that would have created an exemption for victims of rape and incest failed on the Senate floor.

The group urges Governor Andy Beshear to veto the bill.