On February 24, 2011, the Kansas House of Representatives approved new restrictions on abortion. Bills HB 2035 and HB 2281 passed in voice votes of 96 to 25, and 91 to 30, respectively. HB 2281 prevents women from obtaining an abortion after the twentieth week of pregnancy, when some studies suggest a fetus can begin feeling pain. HB 2035, now known as the Abortion Reporting Accuracy and Parental Rights Act, imposes a parental consent requirement for a minor's abortion or "clear and convincing" evidence for judicial bypass. It also allows abortion providers to inform patients that the fetus is a "whole, separate, unique, living human being." Gov. Sam Brownback signed the bills into law in April 2011. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) recently challenged another Kansas abortion law that prohibits insurance companies from including coverage for abortion in their comprehensive plans. In September 2011, a judge for the US District Court for the District of Kansas denied the ACLU's requested injunction.
Learn more about Kansas and the laws governing abortion from the JURIST news archive.