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Neb. Lawmaker Proposes Antiabortion-Rights Measure

January 19, 2016 — Nebraska Sen. Al Davis (R) proposed a measure (LB 990) last week that would bar abortion clinics and providers from offering abortion care if they sell fetal tissue, the AP/Franklin Daily Journal reports.

According to the AP/Franklin Daily Journal, Planned Parenthood operates two clinics, one in Lincoln and one in Omaha, and Dr. Leroy Carhart operates a third clinic in Bellevue (AP/Franklin Daily Journal, 1/15).

Background

Gov. Pete Ricketts (R) requested that the state Department of Health and Human Services investigate the state's Planned Parenthood clinics after the release of misleading videos targeting Planned Parenthood's fetal tissue donation program this summer. Those investigations into Planned Parenthood clinics in Omaha and Lincoln, conducted in late August 2015, found one reporting violation at each clinic.

Separately, two state health inspectors in August also spent three days looking into the Bellevue Health Clinic in response to allegations that the clinic was performing abortions past the state's 20-week ban on abortion and that it was incorrectly handling and disposing of fetal tissue. In November 2015, health officials said their investigations found no evidence that the facility violated the 20-week ban or mishandled fetal tissue (Women's Health Policy Report, 11/4/15).

Bill Details

Davis' measure would permit courts to prohibit an individual or facility found to be selling fetal tissue from providing abortion care.

In addition, the bill would require abortion providers to submit monthly reports on how they disposed of fetal tissue. The measure would also mandate that DHHS enact regulations requiring facilities that provide abortion care to dispose of fetal tissue by cremation, burial or incineration (AP/Franklin Daily Journal, 1/15).