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Dignified Disposition of Human Fetal Remains

S.B. 25 - Sen. Rick Jones
S.B. 54 - Sen. Rick Jones
S.B. 55 - Sen. Rick Jones
H.B. 4119 - Rep. Philip Potvin
H.B. 4120 - Rep. Philip Potvin

Current Status

S.B. 25 was introduced on January 19, 2011 and S.B. 54-55 were introduced on January 20. The three bills passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee with unanimous votes on February 15. S.B. 55 was eliminated after changes to S.B. 25 and 54, and the Senate passed these two bills on October 20 with a 33-5 vote.

H.B. 4119-20 were introduced on January 20, 2011 and referred to the House Committee on Health Policy.

Description

This bill package is designed to enhance existing Michigan law to properly dispose of the bodies of miscarried and aborted babies. The 2010 discovery of 17 aborted babies in a business dumpster outside a Lansing abortion facility sparked public outcry and a resolve among legislators to make these changes to Michigan law. The bills would change our current state health code so that fetal remains will no longer be classified as "products of conception" and "pathological waste," along with the placenta, umbilical cord, and other uterine contents resulting from a pregnancy. The bills would require hospitals and abortion facilities to bury or cremate any fetus or part of a fetus that has recognizable anatomical parts or has completed at least 8 weeks gestation. Regarding miscarried babies, the parents will have the right to determine the final disposition of the fetal remains.

History

Lawmakers have made several attempts to ensure the humane disposal of aborted or miscarried babies in prior sessions. In the 2009-2010 session, Reps. Rick Jones, Bob Genetski, Joseph Haveman and Darwin Booher, along with Senators Alan Cropsey, Tupac Hunter and Roger Kahn introduced an identical bill package. The Senate bills passed the Senate with a 30-8 vote on November 10, 2010, but did not move through the House due to the limited number of session days remaining.

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