Abortion Bills Debated At Public Hearing

The three bills would have a big impact on abortions in Alabama.

One would require clinics to stay at least 2000 feet away from schools, which would shut down one in Huntsville. 

Another would let doctors refuse certain procedures based on the conscience.
 
The last, and most discussed, would ban abortions after a heartbeat is detected. 
 
“It would ban abortions from essentially six weeks on. As I’ve said before abortions are constitutionally protected right for women. Women need to be able to self determine their own lives. So the fetal heartbeat bill has already been rendered unconstitutional in other states,” said Susan Watson, ACLU Alabama Executive Director.
 
North Dakota passed a similar bill that was overturned by a federal court last year.
Some people like Amy Beth Shaver are hoping that Alabama’s bill will have more success.
She says she’s the result of a teenage pregnancy and wants other mothers to choose life. 
 
“I think more and more people are recognizing with technology that heartbeats begin between day 18 and 24, I’m the mother of 4. That’s the thing that we look for when we go in for that early pregnancy,” said Shaver.
 
But that wasn’t the only bill people took issue with. Some say the bill to keep clinics away from schools is based on the wrong information.
 
“2000 feet is the sex offender rule and that’s how they based this bill. Just likening women that are seeking healthcare, likening them to sex offenders is offensive,” said Watson.
 
None of these bills were voted on today. The committee plans on doing that next week. 
 
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