By Maria V. Gallagher, Legislative Director
The Down Syndrome Protection Act has been reintroduced in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives and referred to the House Health Committee.
The popular bill passed the House last session by an overwhelming, bipartisan, veto-proof majority, but stalled in the state Senate.
The common sense legislation would ban abortions for the sole reason of a Down syndrome diagnosis.
Research shows that the vast majority of children who receive a Down syndrome diagnosis in the womb lose their lives to abortion.
Many parents report being pressured by doctors to turn to abortion after receiving a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome.
This comes at a time when people with Down syndrome are making tremendous strides in our communities and in the nation as a whole. They contribute greatly to our families, schools, and workplaces, and their lives should be protected.
The latest Down syndrome bill is sponsored by House Speaker Mike Turzai (R–Allegheny County) and state Rep. Kate Klunk (R-York County). The bill has also garnered dozens of co-sponsors from all across the political spectrum.
As Rep. Klunk stated in a news release announcing the bill, “We have a responsibility to protect those who don’t have a voice. We have a responsibility to stand up against eugenics. And, we have a responsibility to stand up to say that a baby with Down syndrome has a right to life and should not be discriminated against in the womb. Individuals with Down syndrome live lives full of dignity, value and love. We must embrace these lovable human beings for the amazing individuals they are and not allow policies that erase them from existence. They are truly lives worth living.”
Action Item: If you live in Pennsylvania, please call your state Representative and urge him or her to support the Down Syndrome Protection Act.