Bill that mandates ‘respectful’ disposal of fetal remains passes Senate

Local News

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – A bill that would give women options on how to dispose of fetal remains has passed the Utah Senate. It would apply to women who have an abortion or miscarriage at a medical facility.

S.B. 67, sponsored by Senator Curtis Bramble, is also supported by Pro-Life Utah.

“It is very painful to lose a child — whether through miscarriage or abortion — and all of us deal with that pain in a different way,” said Mary Taylor, with Pro-Life Utah.

“For those women who that would make no difference, this bill makes no difference, but for those of us who would opt to treat those remains with respect and dignity, and have some determination in the final disposition, it makes a huge difference,” added Taylor.

The bill would mandate fetal remains not be disposed of with medical waste. Either the woman chooses cremation or burial, or the facility would be mandated to do it for her.

“We’re concerned that this bill is using those really personal experiences to further a certain ideological agenda,” said Lauren Simpson with Alliance for a Better Utah.

“If you don’t want your fetal tissue to be buried or cremated, that’s not a choice that you have,” added Simpson.

“We support any decision that a woman wants to make at such a really tender and personal time, but we just don’t think that these things should be a mandate,” she said.

“It’s sending a message that in Utah, all fetal tissue of any gestational age is treated like a grown human being, and our concern is this is really just a message bill and something that’s going to be used in future legal proceedings to try and overturn Roe v. Wade,” said Simpson.

Simpson calls it a message bill — part of a nationwide effort since the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Brett Cavanaugh to overturn Roe v. Wade.

“I sincerely hope that they are right that this is a chip in Roe V. Wade and that Roe v. Wade will fall. With all my heart, I hope that,” said Taylor.

“However, that is not the intent at the time. Right now, we are on the ground, dealing with women whose grief and sorrow and guilt and remorse are overwhelming,” added Taylor.


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 Glen is honored to be delivering the news of the day every weeknight at 5, 6, and 10 in his home state. He is an award-winning veteran journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team as a weekend anchor in June 2013. Over the years, he held various positions at the station as he worked his way up to the main anchor chair. He also serves as our Senior Political Correspondent and hosts Inside Utah Politics, which airs every Sunday. The Utah Headliners Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has recognized Glen as the best government and military television reporter in the state. Before returning home to Utah, he spent 11 1/2 years developing his journalism skills in other states. He held various on-air and management positions at KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho, WGBA in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and KKCO in Grand Junction, Colorado during that time. Read More...