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Pennsylvania legislature advances fetal burial, Down syndrome abortion bills
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Pennsylvania legislature advances fetal burial, Down syndrome abortion bills

The Pennsylvania legislation advanced two abortion bills Monday that would require burial or cremation of fetal remains and prohibit abortion following a Down syndrome diagnosis.

The Pennsylvania House approved House Bill 1890, known as the Final Disposition of Fetal Remains Act. Under this legislation, health care facilities would be required to provide burial or cremation services for unborn or miscarried fetuses. Any information relating to the death of the unborn or miscarried fetus that would identify the parent would remain confidential. Any person who violates the act would be subject to the penalty of a fine, of a minimum of $50 and a maximum of $300, imposed under Article IX of the Vital Statistics Law of 1953. In the case of default of payment, the person could be imprisoned in the county jail for up to 30 days. The act, should it be signed into law, would take effect in 60 days from signing.

Also Monday, the Pennsylvania Senate Health and Human Services Committee approved House Bill 321, which would amend Sections 3203 and Section 3204(c) of Title 18 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes. House Bill 321 would prohibit abortion following a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome, unless the unborn was conceived as the result of rape or unless the abortion is medically necessary. This amendment, should it be signed into law, would also take effect in 60 days. It will now go before the full Senate.

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has pledged to veto both bills, should they reach his desk.