The Arkansas Legislature has recessed from its 2021 session.
All told, the General Assembly passed — and Gov. Hutchinson signed — 14 really good pro-life laws that protect women and children in Arkansas.
That’s a record for the State of Arkansas!
No Arkansas General Assembly in state history has passed as many measures to defend the sanctity of human life.
We don’t know of any other state in the country that has passed as much pro-life legislation this year.
Here is a brief rundown of each new law and what it does.
- Act 309 / S.B. 6 (Prohibiting Abortion): This good law by Sen. Jason Rapert (R – Conway) and Rep. Mary Bentley (R – Perryville) prohibits abortion in Arkansas, except in cases when the mother’s life is in jeopardy. This could save the lives of thousands of children and give the courts an opportunity to overturn decades of bad, pro-abortion rulings. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 498 / S.B. 85 (Ultrasound): This good law by Sen. Cecile Bledsoe (R – Rogers) and Rep. Joe Cloud (R – Russellville) requires an abortionist to show an ultrasound image of the unborn baby to the pregnant woman before an abortion. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 561 / H.B. 1589 (Prohibiting Transactions With Abortionists): This good law by Rep. Harlan Breaux (R – Holiday Island) and Sen. Bob Ballinger (R – Ozark) prohibits government entities in Arkansas from engaging in transactions with abortion providers and affiliates of abortion providers. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 820 / H.B. 1592 (Abortionists in Public Schools): This good law by Rep. Mark Lowery (R – Maumelle) prohibits public schools in Arkansas from engaging in transactions with abortion providers. Read The Law Here.
- Act 740 / S.B. 527 (Abortion Facilities): This good law by Sen. Ben Gilmore (R – Crossett) and Rep. Mary Bentley (R – Perryville) requires abortion facilities to have transfer agreements with hospitals, and it fixes a flawed definition in a pro-life law passed in 2019. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 949 / S.B. 388 (Abortion Facilities): This good law by Sen. Charles Beckham (R – McNeil) and Rep. Joe Cloud (R – Russellville) requires any facility that performs abortions to be licensed by the Arkansas Department of Health as an abortion facility, and it prohibits abortions in hospitals except in cases of medical emergency. This will help the state shut down shoddy abortion facilities. Read The Bill Here.
- H.C.R. 1007 (Abortion): This good resolution by Rep. Jim Wooten (R – Beebe) and Sen. Jason Rapert (R – Conway) recognizes January 22 — the anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade abortion decision — as “The Day of Tears” in Arkansas. The resolution acknowledges the 61 million unborn babies killed in abortion in America over the past five decades, and it encourages Arkansans to lower their flags to half-staff on January 22 to mourn the innocent children who have lost their lives. Read The Resolution Here.
- Act 562 / H.B. 1402 (Abortion-Inducing Drugs): This good law by Rep. Sonia Barker (R – Smackover) and Sen. Blake Johnson (R – Corning) updates Arkansas’ restrictions on abortion-inducing drugs like RU-486. It outlines requirements that abortionists must follow in administering abortion-inducing drugs, and it prohibits abortion drugs from being delivered by mail in Arkansas. It also updates current law to ensure doctors who perform chemical abortions are credentialed to handle abortion complications and can transfer the woman to a hospital if she experiences complications. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 560 / H.B. 1572 (Informed-Consent to Chemical Abortion): This good law by Rep. Robin Lundstrum (R – Springdale) and Sen. Scott Flippo (R – Mountain Home) outlines the informed-consent process for chemical abortion. Act 560 will help ensure women get all the facts about chemical abortion — including its risks, consequences, and pro-life alternatives. This will help save many unborn children from abortion. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 787 / S.B. 463 (Abortion Facilities): This good law by Sen. Blake Johnson (R – Corning) and Rep. Tony Furman (R – Benton) requires the State of Arkansas to report abortion data to the federal Centers for Disease Control. It also tightens Arkansas law concerning abortion facility inspections, and it requires abortionists to file certain documentation when the woman is a victim of rape or incest. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 392 / H.B. 1544 (Pro-Life Cities Resolution): This good law by Rep. Kendon Underwood (R – Cave Springs) and Sen. Gary Stubblefield (R – Branch) affirms the right of municipalities in Arkansas to declare themselves pro-life. H.B. 1544 outlines some of the findings and language that cities can put in their pro-life resolution. The bill also clarifies that Pro-Life Cities can install signs or banners announcing that they are pro-life. Read the Bill Here.
- Act 358 / H.B. 1408 (Abortion): This good law by Rep. Robin Lundstrum (R – Springdale) and Sen. Gary Stubblefield (R – Branch) helps prevent abortion providers and their affiliates in Arkansas from receiving Medicaid reimbursements from the state. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 90 / H.B. 1195 (Pro-Life): This good law by Rep. Jim Dotson (R – Bentonville) and Sen. Bob Ballinger (R – Ozark) enacts legislation ensuring that women are offered information, assistance, and resources that could help them choose an option besides abortion. Read The Bill Here.
- Act 226 / H.B. 1116 (Simon’s Law): This good law by Rep. Jim Dotson (R – Bentonville) and Sen. Bart Hester (R – Cave Springs) is named in honor of an infant in Missouri who died after doctors put a Do Not Resuscitate order on his chart without his parent’s knowledge or permission. It helps protect children in Arkansas from being denied life support or having a DNR placed on their medical charts without parental consent. Read The Bill Here.
Besides these bills, the legislature also passed measures addressing bioethics and medical rights of conscience — two issues related to abortion and the right to life.
We are deeply grateful to every legislator to sponsored and supported these pro-life bills, and we are grateful to Gov. Hutchinson for signing them into law.
These are excellent laws that will protect Arkansans for years to come.
The fact that so many pro-life measures passed this year shows that slowly but surely we are winning the fight against abortion in our state.