Establishes a cause of action for damages against a person who attempts or performs a sex selective abortion.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public health law, in relation to establishing a cause of action for damages against a person who attempts or performs a sex selective abortion
PURPOSE: This legislation will make it a crime to perform or attempt a sex selective abortion.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section one amends the public health law by adding 230-e to prohibit sex selection abortions.
Section one defines "Abortion" as the intentional use or prescription of any instrument, medicine, drug or other substance or device or method to terminate the life of an unborn child, or to terminate the pregnancy of a women known to be pregnant with an intention other than to produce a live birth and preserve the life and health of the child after live birth, or to remove an ectopic pregnancy, or to remove a dead unborn child who died as the result of natural causes, accidental trauma, or a criminal assault on the pregnant woman.
Section one also defines "attempt to perform an abortion" meaning to do or omit to do anything that, under the circumstances as the actor believes them to be, in an act or omission constituting a substantial step in a course of conduct planned to culminate in an abortion.
Section one defines "Physician" as a doctor of medicine or osteopathy legally authorized to practice medicine in the state.
Section one states no person shall knowingly or recklessly perform or attempt to perform an abortion with knowledge that the pregnant female is seeking the abortion solely on the account of the sex of the unborn
Section one gives the grounds for a father of the unborn child, or the grandparent of the unborn child to maintain an action against the person who performed or attempted to perform the abortion. The person who performed or attempted to perform the abortion may be liable in such an action for punitive damages not to exceed ten thousand dollars for damages.
Section one also states a abortion provider who knowingly or recklessly performed or attempted to perform an abortion in violation of this section shall be considered to have engaged in unprofessional conduct for which the certificate or license of the provider or provide health care services in this state shall be suspended or revoked.
JUSTIFICATION: Taking the life of an unborn child simply because of her gender is the ultimate form of discrimination. No nation committed to women's equality and human dignity can tolerate this shocking, discriminatory disregard for its own children.
Sex-selection abortion is morally and culturally devastating, and it has no place in our state.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New legislation.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2286 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 15, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. BALL -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Health AN ACT to amend the public health law, in relation to establishing a cause of action for damages against a person who attempts or performs a sex selective abortion THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The public health law is amended by adding a new section 230-e to read as follows: S 230-E. PROHIBITION OF SEX SELECTIVE ABORTION. 1. THE FOLLOWING WORDS OR PHRASES, AS USED IN THIS SECTION SHALL HAVE THE FOLLOWING MEAN- INGS: (A) "ABORTION" MEANS THE INTENTIONAL USE OR PRESCRIPTION OF ANY INSTRUMENT, MEDICINE, DRUG OR ANY OTHER SUBSTANCE OR DEVICE OR METHOD TO TERMINATE THE LIFE OF AN UNBORN CHILD, OR TO TERMINATE THE PREGNANCY OF A WOMAN KNOWN TO BE PREGNANT WITH AN INTENTION OTHER THAN TO PRODUCE A LIVE BIRTH AND PRESERVE THE LIFE AND HEALTH OF THE CHILD AFTER LIVE BIRTH, OR TO REMOVE AN ECTOPIC PREGNANCY, OR TO REMOVE A DEAD UNBORN CHILD WHO DIED AS THE RESULT OF NATURAL CAUSES, ACCIDENTAL TRAUMA, OR A CRIMINAL ASSAULT ON THE PREGNANT WOMAN. (B) "ATTEMPT TO PERFORM AN ABORTION" MEANS TO DO OR OMIT TO DO ANYTHING THAT, UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES AS THE ACTOR BELIEVES THEM TO BE, IS AN ACT OR OMISSION CONSTITUTING A SUBSTANTIAL STEP IN A COURSE OF CONDUCT PLANNED TO CULMINATE IN AN ABORTION. SUCH SUBSTANTIAL STEPS INCLUDE, BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO: (I) AGREEING WITH AN INDIVIDUAL TO PERFORM AN ABORTION ON THAT INDIVIDUAL OR ON SOME OTHER PERSON, WHETHER OR NOT THE TERM "ABORTION" IS USED IN THE AGREEMENT, AND WHETHER OR NOT THE AGREEMENT IS CONTINGENT ON ANOTHER FACTOR SUCH AS RECEIPT OF PAYMENT OR A DETERMINATION OF PREGNANCY; AND (II) SCHEDULING OR PLANNING A TIME TO PERFORM AN ABORTION ON AN INDIVIDUAL, WHETHER OR NOT THE TERM "ABORTION" IS USED, AND WHETHER OR NOT THE PERFORMANCE IS CONTINGENT ONEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD00903-01-3 S. 2286 2
ANOTHER FACTOR SUCH AS RECEIPT OF PAYMENT OR A DETERMINATION OF PREGNAN- CY. THIS DEFINITION SHALL NOT BE CONSTRUED TO REQUIRE THAT AN ABORTION PROCEDURE ACTUALLY BE INITIATED FOR AN ATTEMPT TO OCCUR. (C) "PHYSICIAN" MEANS A DOCTOR OF MEDICINE OR OSTEOPATHY LEGALLY AUTHORIZED TO PRACTICE MEDICINE IN THE STATE. 2. NO PERSON SHALL KNOWINGLY OR RECKLESSLY PERFORM OR ATTEMPT TO PERFORM AN ABORTION WITH KNOWLEDGE THAT THE PREGNANT FEMALE IS SEEKING THE ABORTION SOLELY ON ACCOUNT OF THE SEX OF THE UNBORN CHILD. NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO PROSCRIBE THE PERFORMANCE OF AN ABORTION BECAUSE THE UNBORN CHILD HAS A GENETIC DISORDER THAT IS SEX-LINKED. 3. ANY PERSON UPON WHOM AN ABORTION WAS PERFORMED OR ATTEMPTED TO BE PERFORMED IN VIOLATION OF SUBDIVISION TWO OF THIS SECTION, THE FATHER OF THE UNBORN CHILD, OR THE GRANDPARENT OF THE UNBORN CHILD MAY MAINTAIN AN ACTION AGAINST THE PERSON WHO PERFORMED OR ATTEMPTED TO PERFORM THE ABORTION. THE PERSON WHO PERFORMED OR ATTEMPTED TO PERFORM THE ABORTION MAY BE LIABLE IN SUCH AN ACTION FOR PUNITIVE DAMAGES NOT TO EXCEED TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS AND FOR DAMAGES THE PLAINTIFF ACTUALLY SUSTAINED. NO PLAINTIFF SHALL BE ESTOPPED FROM RECOVERY IN SUCH AN ACTION ON THE GROUND THAT EITHER THE PLAINTIFF OR THE PERSON UPON WHOM THE ABORTION WAS PERFORMED GAVE CONSENT TO THE ABORTION. 4. AN ABORTION PROVIDER WHO KNOWINGLY OR RECKLESSLY PERFORMED OR ATTEMPTED TO PERFORM AN ABORTION IN VIOLATION OF THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSIDERED TO HAVE ENGAGED IN UNPROFESSIONAL CONDUCT FOR WHICH THE CERTIFICATE OR LICENSE OF THE PROVIDER TO PROVIDE HEALTH CARE SERVICES IN THIS STATE SHALL BE SUSPENDED OR REVOKED BY THE STATE BOARD FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL CONDUCT PURSUANT TO SECTION TWO HUNDRED THIRTY-A OF THIS TITLE. 5. IN EVERY PROCEEDING OR ACTION INSTITUTED UNDER THIS SECTION, THE ANONYMITY OF ANY FEMALE UPON WHOM AN ABORTION IS PERFORMED OR ATTEMPTED SHALL BE PRESERVED UNLESS SHE GIVES HER CONSENT TO SUCH DISCLOSURE. THE COURT, UPON MOTION OR SUA SPONTE, SHALL ISSUE ORDERS TO THE PARTIES, WITNESSES AND COUNSEL, AND SHALL DIRECT THE SEALING OF THE RECORD AND EXCLUSION OF INDIVIDUALS FROM COURTROOMS OR HEARING ROOMS TO THE EXTENT NECESSARY TO SAFEGUARD THE FEMALE'S IDENTITY FROM PUBLIC DISCLOSURE. IN THE ABSENCE OF WRITTEN CONSENT OF THE FEMALE UPON WHOM AN ABORTION HAS BEEN PERFORMED OR ATTEMPTED, ANY PLAINTIFF WHO INSTITUTES AN ACTION UNDER SUBDIVISION THREE OF THIS SECTION SHALL DO SO UNDER A PSEUDONYM. S 2. If any provision, word, phrase or clause of this act or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect the provisions, words, phrases, clause or applications of this act which can be given effect without the invalid provision, word, phrase, clause or application, and to this end, the provisions, words, phrases, and clauses of this act are declared to be severable. If the application of this act to the period of pregnancy prior to viability is held invalid, then such invalidity shall not affect its application to the period of pregnancy subsequent to viabil- ity. S 3. This act shall take effect immediately.