Thursday, February 26, 2009

South Carolina House Passes 2-Visit Requirement for Abortions

Via the Daily Women's Health Policy Report: South Carolina House Passes Bill Requiring Mandatory Waiting Period for Abortions

South_carolina_flag South Carolina's House on Tuesday voted 83-28 to approve a bill (H. 3245) requiring women to wait at least 24 hours after an ultrasound before receiving an abortion, the AP/Rock Hill Herald reports. The bill, called the "two-visit bill" by critics, increases the state's mandatory waiting period from one hour. Advocates for the measure said it will give women time to reflect on their decision, as well as put South Carolina in line with a majority of states that have similar laws. Some Democrats noted that other states do not connect the waiting period with an ultrasound. Rep. Steve Parker (R) said the bill "will save lives" and that "[i]f we save one life, I think it's worthwhile."

According to the AP/Herald, Republicans defeated efforts to include provisions in the bill exempting rape survivors and protecting the jobs of women who make the two-day trip. Critics of the bill who proposed the amendments said requiring two trips creates a burden for low-income women living in rural areas because they have to take two days off work and arrange travel to one of three clinics in the state that offer abortion services.

Mandatory Delay/Biased Information Laws, State Legislatures | Permalink

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