Bishops Applaud Ruling on Ultrasound Law05 Apr

The Roman Catholic Bishops of Kentucky applaud Thursday’s ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in EMW Women’s Surgical Center v. Beshear.

The statute in question was passed to ensure women have access to unbiased and medically sound information about abortion procedures and the unborn child in the womb before making an irreversible decision to have an abortion. The court held that this is a legitimate interest of the Commonwealth and that a doctor does not have a right to withhold such information.

HB 2, passed overwhelmingly during the 2017 session of the General Assembly and signed by the governor, requires that a woman seeking an abortion be given the opportunity to receive information about her pregnancy, including the chance to view an ultrasound image, hear the heartbeat of the unborn child, and receive other verbal information from the doctor if she desires it. The requirements regard what the doctor must make available. The woman has the right to refuse any or all of the offered information.

Given the devastating effect that abortion has on both the unborn child and often the mother who later regrets the abortion, it is vitally important that women have all of the information they need to make a decision that is as fully informed as possible. HB 2, when implemented, will ensure that all women have this essential information.

In addition to expressing our gratitude for this court decision, we also reiterate our appreciation to Kentucky policy makers for making the protection of children and women in vulnerable situations a top priority. We look forward to continuing to work with our elected officials to ensure access to information and also to necessary protections in the workplace, health care, education, and all that Kentuckians need to thrive and achieve their God-given potential.

A printable version of this statement may be found here.

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