On Monday, the Pa. House of Representatives approved legislation (HB 1890) that would require that the tissue resulting from miscarriages and abortions be treated the same as a dead body.
This is one of several of abortion-related bills the GOP-controlled legislature is moving to Governor Tom Wolf’s desk.
The burial bill is sponsored by Representative Frank Ryan (R-Lebanon). He said it’s intended to give grieving parents the option to perform funerals after a fetus dies. His wife had several miscarriages, and Ryan said they weren’t given a chance to hold a formal funeral.
“My wife collapsed when we were walking out of the hospital and I realized that we had lost our child and we had lost the remains of our child,” he said. “We wanted to craft something that was voluntary, that provided the family with…closure, with the ability to deal with their loss.”
The bill wouldn’t require parents to take control of fetal remains and hold a funeral. They could still leave the medical provider in charge of the interment process.
Ryan’s bill passed the chamber easily, with a mostly party-lines vote of 123 to 76. Fifteen Democrats supported it.
Jenn Kocher, a spokeswoman for the Senate’s GOP majority, said the caucus hasn’t discussed it yet.