Husbands in Arkansas can now sue their wives for having abortions, even in the case of spousal rape. It took just two months for this heinous bill to become a law.
This bill prohibited all dilation and evacuation procedures, which are used to take the fetus outside the womb. These types of procedures typically take place in the second trimester. Having this kind of abortion is now a felony in Arkansas and the punishment can be up to six years in prison.
A clause in this bill also stated that husbands can file a civil lawsuit against the woman seeking the abortion for monetary damages. If the husband was charged with rape against his wife he cannot win any money, but he can still block the abortion.
Holly Dickson, legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas, said that this bill was unconstitutional:
“They created a whole new right ― the right of a husband or family member to sue a doctor on behalf of an adult patient. I cannot begin to tell you what the intent was, but we have raised concerns about that provision and the entire rest of the bill, which is unconstitutional.”
Dickson and the ACLU will be fighting to overturn this law before it comes into effect later this year. You can support the Arkansas ACLU by visiting their website.