Vermont Governor Phil Scott signed a new bill into law Monday protecting fundamental rights to abortion and family planning.
The bill orders that no public entity may interfere with an individual’s fundamental rights to abortion, carrying a pregnancy to term, contraception or sterilization. The bill orders state and local law enforcement not to prosecute anyone attempting to get an abortion. Anyone who violates the new law will be subject to a private right of action from the party whose rights were infringed. The bill was sent to the governor on June 5 after passing both the House and the Senate.
This bill is the latest bill to reaffirm abortion rights. The bill comes amid a sharp divide in states over the treatment of abortion. A Missouri judge issued an injunction to keep Missouri’s last abortion clinic open while the case is fought in court. North Carolina’s legislature failed to override the Governor’s veto of their “born-alive” abortion ban. Illinois asserted firm rights to an abortion while Nevada relaxed restrictions and criminal penalties on abortion providers. All signs seem to point to these various abortion bills heading for resolution in the US Supreme Court.