Pro-abortion rights advocates are hoping to stop a Texas proposal that requires women who receive abortions or have miscarriages to bury or cremate the fetuses, the Intercept reports.
Texas’ Health and Human Services Commission proposed the rule in July at the request of the state’s Governor Greg Abbott, an anti-abortion advocate who believed it was necessary to “affirm the value and dignity of all life,” according to the Austin American-Statesman. But in recent weeks, pro-abortion rights advocates have made a concerted effort to try to convince the commission to reconsider the proposal. Pro-abortion rights advocates see the proposal as another attempt by the state to limit the procedure after the Supreme Court struck down a number of the state’s restrictions on abortion in June.
In October, over 5,500 pro-abortion rights advocates submitted a petition to the commission against the proposal. At a public hearing last week, women shared personal stories of abortions and miscarriages and argued that the proposal would further traumatize women, according to the American-Statesman. And they argued that the proposal would make it financially impossible for many women to get an abortion because burial costs, which many experts believe would be forced upon the women themselves and not the abortion clinics, can stretch up to $2,000. State officials said that they’d take the concerns into consideration before deciding on whether to implement the proposal.
Similar laws have been proposed or passed in a number of states — including Indiana, where Vice President-elect and governor Mike Pence signed one into law. To protest the Indiana law, pro-abortion rights advocates began calling Pence’s office with details about their periods. In June, a federal judge blocked that Indiana law from going into effect.
On Monday, Texas legislators additionally proposed a number of bills that would restrict abortion rights in the state to discuss next term — only days after Donald Trump, who said he would appoint anti-abortion justices to the Supreme Court, was elected president. With Trump and Pence only months away from leading the country, many women fear that the abortion rights upheld by the Supreme Court might, once again, be in serious jeopardy.