COLUMBUS - 

State Representative Wes Retherford (R-Hamilton) today applauded the passage of House Bill 214, legislation prohibiting abortions on unborn children who have or may have Down syndrome.


The legislation, also known as “The Down Syndrome Non-Discrimination Act,” prohibits anyone from performing or inducing an abortion if that person has knowledge that the diagnosis or test result indicating Down syndrome in an unborn child is the reason for seeking the abortion.


House Bill 214, which was joint-sponsored by Reps. Sarah LaTourette (R-Chesterland) and Derek Merrin (R-Monclova Township), also requires medical professionals to distribute up-to-date, evidence-based information on Down syndrome to parents who receive the diagnosis.


“I am proud to support this legislation that aims to combat discrimination of those with Down syndrome. House Bill 214 protects the life of those who are diagnosed with this genetic disorder before they are born,” said Retherford. “People all over the state of Ohio are living full and joyful lives with Down syndrome, despite facing unique daily challenges. Their right to life should not be denied based on the results of one test.”


Violation of the statute is a fourth-degree felony and would result in the State Medical Board revoking a physician’s license. A physician would also be liable for compensation to any person who sustains injury, death, or loss from the prohibited abortion. The legislation grants criminal immunity for a pregnant woman on whom it was performed.


House Bill 214 now heads to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.

 
 
 
  
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