Attorney General Ken Paxton today commended the U.S. Supreme Court after it issued a decision upholding Indiana’s law requiring the humane disposition of fetal remains. In overturning a lower court ruling, the Supreme Court held that a state has a “legitimate interest in proper disposal of fetal remains.”
Texas joined Wisconsin and 17 other states on a friend-of-the-court brief filed with the high court in the Indiana case. The brief was cited today by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas in his concurrence.
“The U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly recognized that states have an interest in the lives of the unborn. This latest ruling honors the dignity of the unborn and prevents fetal remains from being treated as medical waste,” Attorney General Paxton said. “My office is awaiting oral argument in our state’s own fetal remains case. We look forward to demonstrating that Texas’ law is constitutional and does not impact the abortion procedure or the availability of abortion in Texas.”
In 2017, the Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 8, which, among other things, prohibits health care providers from disposing of fetal remains in sewers or landfills and instead requires their remains to be treated in more dignified fashion such as burial, cremation, or the spreading of ashes. Previous law permitted fetal remains to be discharged into a sewer system or incinerated and sent to a landfill. Last September, a U.S. District Court issued an injunction blocking the law.
View today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision here: