From Governor Rick Snyder’s office and from the Michigan Senate Democrats:
Gov. Rick Snyder today signed a bill to increase safety standards at abortion clinics and put measures in place to help prevent coercive abortions.
“This bill respects a woman’s right to choose while helping protect her health and safety, including making sure a pregnant person is not being coerced into a decision,” Snyder said.
House Bill 5711, sponsored by state Rep. Bruce Rendon, also provides steps a physician must follow to properly and respectfully dispose of fetal remains.
Specifically, the bill requires health facilities or abortion clinics that advertise abortion services and that conduct more than 120 surgical abortions per year become licensed freestanding surgical outpatient facilities by the state. The bill also provides that licensure waivers can be granted to any facility that is in existence as of December, 2012 and is determined to be operating in a manner that protects the health and welfare of its patients.
HB 5711 also ensures that physician or qualified health professionals screen patients regarding coercion to abort, and provide resources that can help. The Michigan Department of Community Health and partners in the domestic violence prevention community will develop information and training tools in those efforts. Lastly, the bill provides steps a physician must follow to properly and respectfully dispose of fetal remains.
Following that news, Michigan Senate Democratic Leader Gretchen Whitmer released this statement:
“It’s offensive, but no longer surprising, that Governor Snyder would align himself with extremists in his own party by putting his signature on a bill that represents the most blatant attack on women’s healthcare we’ve seen in Michigan. He can claim this is somehow about protecting our health all he wants, but we all know this disgraceful new law will only succeed in reducing or eliminating women’s access to cancer screenings and other critically important care. Republicans across the country saw the consequences of their war on women this past November and if Governor Snyder thinks we’re naive enough to believe his ridiculous excuses for signing this bill into law, he’s sadly mistaken.”