‘Landmark day for the Wyoming pro-life movement’: Governor signs state’s first pro-life laws in 28 years
CHEYENNE, Wyoming, March 10, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – On Thursday, Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead signed laws mandating women have the right to see their baby's ultrasound and hear the heartbeat before an abortion and also prohibiting experimentation on aborted babies.
These are the first pro-life laws in the state in 28 years.
"After many years of work, prayer, and witness, it is good to finally see some incremental steps toward preserving the sanctity of human life," Deacon Vernon Dobelmann, director of pastoral ministries for the Diocese of Cheyenne, told LifeSiteNews via email. He added that pro-lifers have ensured support systems for expectant mothers are in place across the state.
The ultrasound law, House Bill 182, mandates:
Except in the case of a medical emergency, the physician performing the abortion on the patient, the referring physician or a person designated by either physician shall inform the patient of the opportunity to view an active ultrasound of the unborn child and hear the heartbeat of the unborn child if the heartbeat is audible. The active ultrasound image and auscultation of fetal heart tone shall be of a quality consistent with standard medical practice in the community.
The other law, House Bill 116, makes the sale, transfer, or distribution of aborted baby parts a felony.
There appears to be three abortion facilities in Wyoming, one of which is a Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood has faced criticism and criminal referrals after undercover videos from the Center for Medical Progress revealed its role in fetal body parts trafficking.
After lobbying for bills as they went through the legislature, pro-life students stood behind Mead as he signed the laws.
"March 9th, 2017 will be remembered as a landmark day for the Wyoming pro-life movement," Bethany Janzen, Students for Life of America's Rocky Mountain regional coordinator, wrote in a blog post. She said pro-life students and families, including the Cheyenne homeschool community, came to committee meetings and testified in favor of the legislation.
The laws go into effect on July 1.