Bioethics News

Rights of aborted foetal remains. Recognised by different countries

Fetal remains  can not be treated as clinical waste

Texas will bury or cremate aborted children. From 19 December 2016, abortion clinics can no longer treat the bodies of the victims (fetal remains) as clinical waste but will have to bury or cremate them, whichever the parents decide. The local reform is part of a new trend to recognise the rights of victims of abortion.

Along the same line of respect for foetal remains, the Austrian government is also permitting parents to inscribe children weighing less than 500 g who die before birth in the country’s Civil Registry. They can also obtain birth and death certificate where the baby’s name appears.

Austria sets a precedent to recognise the right to life of the unborn. In this case, the government, led by the Social Democrats, has obtained sufficient support to go ahead with a reform that allows parents to inscribe children who die before birth weighing less than 500 g in the Civil Registry.

This measure gives parents a birth certificate for their deceased child, as well as a death certificate where the baby’s name appears.

For now, it is the first European country to approve a measure with similar characteristics, but it is a great step towards recognising not only that children who are conceived are human beings, but that they have their own legal entity.

The Austrian Family Minister, Sophie Karmasin, is satisfied with the measure, according to Austrian newspaper Kurier, claiming that it is a measure “that will help parents to overcome the death of their children”.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.