What is Senate Bill 8?
Updated: Jul 13
On September 1, 2021, Texas Senate Bill #8 was created after Texas Governor, Greg Abbott, signed it into law. The provisions of this law consist of two key components. First, this law would ban any access to abortion upon the detection of a fetal, cardiac activity in the fetus. Secondly, it allows anyone to sue the abortion providers along with others who had "aided and abetted" a person trying to secure an abortion. This is especially detrimental in trying to seek an abortion, and Texas Senate Bill #8 directly prohibits physicians from providing any care if they can detect fetal, heart tones or sounds. This law defines heart tones as the "steady and repetitive rhythmic contraction of the fetal heart without the gestational sac." However, fetal, cardiac activity is generally known to be first detected by an ultrasound as early as 5 to 6 weeks after conception, but before the fetus' heart has actually developed or is working. Thus, most women are unaware that they are pregnant or make it a priority to seek care before this six week gestation period. Even if they do seek immediate help with their pregnancy, due to the unrealistic time frame mandated by this law, the abortion clinics may be unavailable within this time period that this law allows. Consequently, most women are forced to either conceive without slim hopes of nurturing and providing their child in an adequate manner or environment, or traveling to other states that has not passed a similar law like Texas Senate Bill #8, yet!
“Senate Bill 8.” Senate Bill 8 | Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas, Inc., https://www.plannedparenthood.org/planned-parenthood-greater-texas/senate-bill-8.
“Texas SB8: 2021-2022: 87th Legislature.” LegiScan, https://legiscan.com/TX/text/SB8/id/2395961.