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Ind. governor signs new more restrictive abortion laws

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Indianapolis and the Indiana State Capitol. (Image by David Mark from Pixabay)

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb, a Republican, has signed two new laws that would increase restrictions on abortion in the state, the Times of Northwest Indiana reported.

House Enrolled Act 1211, prohibits dilation and evacuation abortions, called “dismemberment abortion” in the law, except when a woman otherwise would suffer “substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function.” According to the newspaper, only 27 were performed in 2017 out of 7,778 abortions in the state. It’s usually performed when prenatal testing indicates serious health risks for either the fetus or the pregnant woman if the pregnancy is carried to term. It is the safest procedure to perform after 13 weeks.

The second law, Senate Enrolled Act 201, would expand the state’s conscience-protection statute for medical professionals who do not want to perform an abortion to include nurses, pharmacists and physician assistants who are not directly employed by a hospital or health clinic. The bill passed the Indiana House back in March.

The ACLU of Indiana has already announced it will challenge HEA 1211, the Times reported. Similar laws in other states have already been ruled unconstitutional.

Both laws go into effect on July 1, the newspaper said.

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