The law ignominiously known as the “miscarriage bill” was signed by a Utah governor last week in a move which renders women little more than incubators, writes Melissa McEwan. Utah governor Gary Herbert signed into law Utah HB 462, a reworked version of an earlier bill which had been strongly criticised for having the potential to get women put away for lifelong prison terms for falling down the stairs or staying in an abusive relationship. The revised version is thankfully much more specific. It makes a distinction between accidental and “intentional or knowing” miscarriage (aka criminal homicide, life sentence etc) and states that a woman can be prosecuted for the death of her unborn child, unless it qualifies as legal abortion. “Thus are the women of Utah left with a new law that criminalises illegal abortion in a state that increasingly discourages legal abortion,” writes Mc Ewan. “Utah already requires parental notification and consent for minors seeking abortions, mandates a 24-hour waiting period to terminate a pregnancy, subjects women seeking abortions to state-directed counselling which overtly discourages abortion, and allows public funding for terminations only in cases of rape, incest, fetal abnormality, or threat to the women’s life or physical health.”
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