Legislation requiring hospitals to inform rape victims about emergency contraceptives will get a hearing in an Assembly committee after all.
The Compassionate Care for Rape Victims bill had strong support in the Senate, but the chair of the Assembly committee where it was assigned didn't plan to hold a hearing. Now, that committee will take testimony on the bill later today. State Representative Terry Musser (R-Black River Falls), the Assembly sponsor of the bill, says the hearing comes as a result of continued pressure to address concerns about the bill from opponents. State Representative Mark Gundrum, the chair of the committee that will hold the hearing, has raised constitutional concerns about the legislation.
Musser is hoping those impacted by hospitals not offering the "morning after pill" will show the need for the legislation. He says those individuals reflect how the current system re-victimizes women who have been the target of rape.
The bill requires hospitals to tell rape or incest victims about emergency contraception options and to make the drugs available if requested.
The Senate version of the legislation passed earlier this year on a 27-6 vote. Musser expects it would receive a similar vote in the Assembly if it heads to the floor for a vote.
The bill is being heard by the Assembly Committee on Judiciary and Ethics.