Bill To Require Signs at Abortion Clinics Sparks Debate

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Abortion foes and supporters are at odds over a Nebraska bill that would require clinics to post conspicuous signs saying women can't be pressured into having the procedure.

Abortion opponents say the bill would make clear to women that the law protects them from coercion by boyfriends, husbands, parents and others. The Legislature's Judiciary Committee heard testimony Thursday from women who say the signs might have made a difference when they had abortions decades ago.

Abortion-rights supporters say it raises free-speech concerns, and note that women already undergo counseling to ensure they aren't being coerced.

The bill by Sen. Bill Kintner, of Papillion, would impose a $10,000 fine for each day a sign is not posted.

"Let's just make sure she knows her rights, that she's at ease with the decision she's making," said Kintner. "It's a very tough, emotional decision she's making."

But Senator Danielle Conrad says this is just a trap bill. Trap means Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers. She says bills like these are restricting.

"What this really is, is it's part of a well organized, well orchestrated effort across our country to make abortion a right in name only," said Conrad. "And to restrict access and to intimidate women and to intimidate providers."

The bill is LB1032.

Also in the hearing Thursday, bills from Danielle Conrad that would make abortion more accessible for younger women.