On Tuesday, Governor Doug Ducey signed legislation that expands protections for unborn children with a genetic abnormality.
“There’s immeasurable value in every single life — regardless of genetic makeup,” said Governor Ducey. “We will continue to prioritize protecting life in our preborn children, and this legislation goes a long way in protecting real human lives. My sincere thanks to Senator Nancy Barto for her leadership and work on this life-saving issue.”
Senate Bill (SB) 1457 makes it a Class 6 felony to perform an abortion solely because of a genetic abnormality, use force or threat to intimidate a person to have an abortion because of a genetic abnormality of the child, or accept or solicit money to finance an abortion because of a genetic abnormality of the child. The bill does not apply to cases where the child has a lethal fetal condition and does not prohibit abortion sought for other reasons allowed by law, including the life and health of the mother. The bill also ensures a woman will not be prosecuted for failing to properly care for herself or failing to follow a program of prenatal care, or against a person who performs in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures.
“We need to protect our most vulnerable, especially those with treatable genetic conditions,” said Senator Barto. “They are loved, integral members of our community that make Arizona whole — and I’m proud to sponsor legislation that gives them a voice before they’re even born. Thank you, Governor Ducey, for signing Senate Bill 1457.”
Under SB 1457, a person performing an abortion must complete an affidavit stating that the person is not aborting the child because of an abnormality. It also requires the doctor performing the abortion inform the woman that is it unlawful to perform an abortion due to the child’s race, sex, or genetic abnormality.
With this legislation, Arizona remains among the top pro-life states in the nation.
Governor Ducey’s action on SB 1457 comes days after he signed SB 1254, which ensures women have easy access to information about adoption and resources that are available to assist them during pregnancy.
Additionally, the Governor on April 9 signed HB 2410 to extend the time a baby can be delivered to a Safe Haven program from 72 hours to 30 days old.