Ohio bill requires aborted fetal remains be cremated or buried

Ohio Statehouse (file photo)

COLUMBUS (WCMH/AP) — Ohio hospitals and providers must cremate or bury any aborted fetal remains under a proposal that has passed the state Senate.

Ohio currently requires providers to dispose of aborted fetuses “in a humane manner,” but that’s not further defined in law.

Backers of the proposal say the measure clarifies the vague rules and ensures the unborn are treated with dignity. Opponents of the idea have called it medically unnecessary and burdensome to women and abortion providers.

“It may not legally restrict a woman’s right to abortion but it shames her after she’s already made that decision into making another decision,” said Senate Democrats leader Joe Schiavoni. “For me, that is something that we should not be legislating.”

Under the bill, women who have abortions would be given the choice to decide whether their fetal remains should be cremated or buried. They would have to express their choice in writing.

Republican Senator Bill Coley said not passing the bill could lead to disturbing discoveries by archaeologists hundreds of years from now.

“I don’t want it to be where in like South America or some areas in the world and they find that babies were sacrificed or were thrown out with the garbage and things like that,” Coley said.

Senators approved the bill on a 23-10 vote Wednesday. Similar legislation is pending in the House.

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