As federal legislation to ban all types of human cloning makes its way through the US Congress, similar proposals are appearing at the state level – many propelled by claims by anti-abortion forces that the practice threatens “unborn” lives. Currently, there are at least 48 bills to ban or regulate cloning that are making their way through legislatures in 22 states, according to USA Today. "In the absence of a ban by the federal government, states are acting on the issue," Indiana state Senator Patricia Miller (R) told Stateline.org.
Joining Michigan and Iowa, Arkansas recently enacted a complete ban on both reproductive and therapeutic cloning - the cloning of human cells to make stem cells, which could hold the key to cures for many degenerative diseases including Parkinson’s, neural injuries and diabetes. In addition, both the House and the Senate in North Dakota have approved a bill banning all types of cloning while one chamber in Indiana, Kentucky and New Jersey have passed complete bans. On the other hand, Louisiana, Virginia and Rhode Island have all passed laws banning only reproductive cloning while California has passed a law specifically supporting therapeutic cloning. Maryland, Tennessee, Washington and New York are among those predicted to do the same.
The Feminist Majority, along with other healthcare advocates, believes that cloning research is critical to finding future treatments and cures for diseases. A survey released recently shows that the majority of Americans also support stem cell research; 67 percent said they favored Congress allowing research with therapeutic cloning to continue.
Media Resources: Stateline.org 3/13/03; Kaiser Daily Reproductive Health Report 3/26/03, 3/21/03; USA Today 2/24/03
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .