Article by Emily Woodrow
Last week in Texas, federal Judge Ezra prohibited the legality of an abortion law that would have required hospitals, health care facilities, and clinics to bury or cremate fetal remains without consent of the patient. This law was planned to take effect this February as a part of the Senate Bill 8 which passed in July 2017 and was created by anti-abortion politicians. Whole Woman’s Health and other Texas abortion providers filed for a lawsuit against this abortion law on the basis that burial and cremation requirements were a “politically motivated attempt by the state to force abortion providers into closing because only a limited number of vendors would be willing or able to meet the onerous disposal requirements”. Additionally, president of Whole Woman’s Health Amy Hagstrom stated that the law was “designed to shame and stimatize patients and health care providers” in regards to the morality of abortion. Texas has a history of strong abortion regulation laws and conflict over them. This is largely because the republican politicians against abortion dominate Texas government positions such as Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and the attorney general. It is very probable that Juge Ezra’s decision will be appealed in the next 30 days. This would then send the case to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans which is considered to be a very conservative federal court and is possible that the decision could then be appealed to the Supreme Court. Although this abortion law was claimed unconstitutional in Texas, its future is uncertain.