Bill Protecting Babies with Down Syndrome Diagnoses Passes PA House Health Committee

HARRISBURG, Pa. – Preborn babies with a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome will be protected under a bill passed Monday in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives Health Committee. The measure passed by a 17 – 09 vote.

“The Down Syndrome Protection Act would prohibit an abortion of any child solely due to a diagnosis of possible Down syndrome,” said Maria Gallagher, Legislative Director of the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, an affiliate of National Right to Life. “Innocent children would not be discriminated against just because they have an extra chromosome,” Gallagher added.

Under current state law, a woman can have an abortion prior to 24 weeks for any reason except if the women’s sole reason is sex selection. This legislation would simply expand that exception to include a pre-natal diagnosis of Down syndrome.

“People with Down syndrome contribute greatly to our families, communities, and workplaces,” Gallagher said. “We urge swift passage of this important piece of disability rights legislation by the full House and Senate.”