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In Rhode Island

After Roe, abortion will still be legal in most circumstances. Keep reading to find out more about what abortion law would be in your state after Roe.

THE BIG QUESTION

After Roe, will my state ban nearly all abortions or allow nearly all abortions?

Rhode Island will still allow most abortions even after Roe is overturned. Read more about the legal limits Rhode Island places on abortion below.

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WHAT’S NEXT

What is my state’s next step in the fight for life, once Roe is overturned?

Rhode Island has NO protection for pre-born babies, so our state has a long way to go in protecting life. After Roe, Rhode Island should advance basic legislation to protect babies who are born alive after botched abortions. The legislature should also consider legislation that protects babies from abortions at the point at which they can feel pain.

Rhode Island must also work to stop bad legislation that would repeal the Abortion Coverage Exclusion in the Medicaid Program.

MORE ABOUT YOUR STATE’S ABORTION LAWS

Below, we’ve summarized what abortion laws would be in your state after Roe.

Abortion Limits, Exceptions and Enforcement

Limitations on abortions

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If my state won’t ban all abortions, what are the limits to abortion?

Post-viability abortions are banned in Rhode Island except when necessary to save the life of the mother or prevent a grave health risk to the mother. R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-4.13-2(d).


Exceptions to any limitations

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Are there any exceptions to those limitations placed on abortion?

Yes: The post-viability ban includes an exception for when an abortion is necessary to save the life of the mother. R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-4.13-2(d).


Penalties for performing an illegal abortion

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What are the penalties to abortion providers for committing an illegal abortion (one of the forms of abortion that my state has limited under the law)?

A physician who violates the post-viability limitation might have his or her license indefinitely revoked (R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-4.13-2(d)(3)), or might only receive a reprimand (R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-4.13-2(d)(1)); R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-37-6.3(1)).


Enforcement

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When abortion laws are violated, who can file a lawsuit to enforce their rights and the law?

Mothers who are not given the required notice have a civil cause of action against the abortion provider. R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-4.7-7.

The parent or parents who contest an abortion done on their unemancipated child may file a complaint with the Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline, which will then decide how to respond. R.I. Gen. Laws § 5-37-5.2.; R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-4.7-7.


Special standards of care

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Does my state impose a special medical standard of care on abortion providers?

No.


Protecting Fundamental Rights

Parents

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Does my state give parents the right to consent for their child to get an abortion?

Yes, consent from one parent is required, with exceptions. R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-4.7-6.


Medical professionals

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Does my state have conscience protections for medical professionals who do not want to participate in abortions?

Yes. Refusing to participate in an abortion does not form the basis of a claim for damages. R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-17-11.


Babies Born Alive

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Are there legal protections for babies born alive following a botched abortion in my state?

Yes, failure to provide reasonable care to an infant who survives abortion is punishable by a fine of up to $5,000, or imprisonment for a maximum term of five years. R.I. Gen. Laws § 11-9-18. 

If the infant dies as a result of the abortion provider’s failure to provide reasonable care, that provider is guilty of manslaughter. R.I. Gen. Laws § 11-9-18.


Safety & Health of Women

Physician-only requirement

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Does an abortion have to be provided by a licensed physician in my state?

Yes: A “licensed healthcare practitioner” may perform non-surgical abortions prior to the 14th week of gestation. 216 RI ADC 20-10-6.3.4(A).; 216 RI ADC 20-10-6.3.1(B).  

Only physicians may perform surgical abortions. 216 RI ADC 20-10-6.3.4(A). 


Informed consent

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Does my state’s law require that a woman give informed consent and/or receive counseling prior to allowing an abortion to be performed?

Yes, counseling is required. R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-4.7-3.


Waiting period

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Does my state place any waiting requirement on abortion so that a mother has more time to decide?

No.


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MAKING A MORE PROLIFE RHODE ISLAND

Your state does not (yet!) have a state family policy council working on the issue of life at your state’s capitol. But the need to fight for life in your state is critical!

If you’re interested in helping start a state family policy council in Rhode Island, please contact us at: Mail@familypolicyalliance.com.

And, be sure to check out the good prolife work being done by our national allies as well and find a way to plug into the #AfterRoe movement!

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The opportunity of a lifetime