Pennsylvania Family Council applauds Senate Judiciary Committee for passage of Down Syndrome Protection Act (House Bill 2050)
(HARRISBURG, PA – June 13, 2018) – Today, Pennsylvania Family Council joins families across the Commonwealth in applauding the Senate Judiciary Committee under chairman, Senator Stewart Greenleaf, for passing the Down Syndrome Protection Act. This bill (HB 2050) is a major advance in providing people with Down syndrome full inclusion into Pennsylvania communities by protecting them from being targeted for abortion because of a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome.
Pennsylvania Family Council also thanks the chief sponsors – House Speaker Mike Turzai and Rep. Judy Ward and Senator Scott Martin – for their passionate leadership in protecting the most vulnerable in our society.
“Whether a child is diagnosed with Down syndrome before or after birth, disability rights start at diagnosis,” says Michael Geer, President of the Pennsylvania Family Council. “All human life should be valued and respected – including those in the womb. The targeting of babies for abortion solely for the possible diagnosis of Down syndrome is a deadly form of discrimination that should rightly be banned.”
The Down Syndrome Protection Act would prohibit an abortion of any child solely due to a diagnosis of possible Down syndrome. Estimates are that in the United States, more than two-thirds of babies diagnosed prenatally as likely having Down syndrome are killed by abortion. This sad reality – which borders on eugenics – is being fostered and encouraged by some in the medical profession here in Pennsylvania and across America who advise or pressure parents to choose abortion when a Down syndrome diagnosis is presented.
Under current Pennsylvania law, a woman can obtain an abortion prior to 24 weeks gestational age for any reason if a physician deems it is necessary, except if the woman’s sole reason is to select the sex of the child. This bill would simply expand that exception.
“Birth mothers who don’t think they could raise a special needs child have support and we need to ensure they are aware of it,” added Jeremy Samek, who recently adopted a child with Down syndrome. “If they still think they can’t do it even with the support, there are people willing to adopt children with special needs, and birth moms who place their child in a loving home are heroes.”
Pennsylvania Family Council looks forward to swift passage by the full Senate.
Contact your State Senator and ask for a YES vote on the Down Syndrome Protection Act. To email, use our Citizen Action Center at pafamily.org/downsyndrome.