A bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives to ban abortion in Florida.
Rep. Charles Van Zant, an ordained Baptist minister, proposed the Florida for Life Act.
The bill prohibits inducing, performing, attempting to perform or assisting in induced abortions. The bill defines an induced abortion as a “medically initiated termination of a human pregnancy with the intent to kill a human embryo or fetus that is not dying of natural causes.” Medically initiated services include pharmaceuticals, surgery and the use of any other devices.
Van Zant believes Florida should not allow abortions and the bill should protect the life of an unborn child.
“The unborn child has no life,” Van Zant said. “Their civil rights and right to life has been taken away. This shameful human conduct has to stop in the state of Florida.”
Section 2 of the bill states that the Legislature finds all form of life comes from the Creator and begins at conception, and the decision to kill an embryo or fetus is the deprivation of that unborn child’s unalienable right to life.
Legal abortions must be approved by two physicians and can only be performed if the pregnancy will impair a major bodily function, affect the treatment of a life-threatening disease or cause death. No exceptions for rape or incest are included in the bill.
The charge associated, if convicted, is a first-degree felony with a maximum sentence of life.
Any physician or employee of the medical facility must provide information on adoptions and a list of attorneys who provide volunteer legal services to certain patients previously treated or seeking abortions. If health care personnel fail to do so, they could face up to life in prison.
Staci Fox, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of North Florida Inc., an advocate for pro-choice, believes the government should not infringe on women’s rights.
“Not everyone agrees with a woman’s right to choose to terminate a pregnancy,” Fox said in a Planned Parenthood of North Florida press release in 2010, “but that is the point: It should be a woman’s decision.” 12