Senate approves stillborn birth certificate bill lobbied for by Clarinda woman

News

March 21st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Senate has unanimously passed a bill that allows parents of stillborn babies to request a birth certificate. The measure has passed the House and now goes to Gov. Terry Branstad for his signature. Iowa is the 33rd state to pass a bill, says Mandy Ford, a 34-year-old mother from Clarinda who lobbied lawmakers to pass the measure. Ford’s daughter Melody was stillborn last August. She says the state acknowledges a stillborn baby’s death but not the birth. She says for many grieving families, it will make a big difference. Since 1939 Iowa has issued only a certificate of fetal death. Under the new law, parents requesting it will receive a certificate of birth resulting in stillbirth. There are no date limits, so parents with earlier stillborn children may apply.