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Rubio, Colleagues Reintroduce Bill to Protect Rights of Pregnant Students

Sep 28, 2023 | Press Releases

Pregnant students are sometimes discriminated against by their schools, either intentionally or unintentionally and there is a concerning lack of awareness about the resources and rights available to them. Due to a lack of services and discrimination, these women may mistakenly believe that abortion is their only option. 

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and colleagues reintroduced the Pregnant Students Rights Act to protect the rights of pregnant students and their babies by strengthening existing requirements for higher education institutions to publicly disclose the resources and rights available.

  • “Pregnant college students should never feel like abortion is their only option. This bill would empower more women to choose life by ensuring they are aware of all the resources available to them and their babies while pursuing their education. Every life is precious, and college campuses should never make young women feel marginalized for choosing life.” – Senator Rubio

Senators James Lankford (R-OK), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS), Rick Scott (R-FL), Roger Wicker (R-MS), and Mike Braun (R-IN) are original cosponsors. 

  • “I think we all understand the overwhelmingly liberal attitudes on most college campuses, but that should not mean pro-life services for students should be given the short shrift.  Our bill is intended to ensure colleges and universities actively ensure pregnant students know their protections and rights other than abortion.” – Senator Hyde-Smith
  • “I’m proud to cosponsor the Pregnant Students Rights Act, which requires schools to inform pregnant students of all the protections and services afforded to them and their unborn child. There are so many organizations working to support new and soon-to-be moms, and making sure they know about these resources is critical to protecting them and their unborn child.” – Senator Scott
  • “College students should have access to all resources available when making decisions about their pregnancy, not just pressured into an abortion. This legislation ensures that pregnant students are informed about their protections and rights.” – Senator Braun 

Specifically, the Pregnant Student Rights Act would: 

  • Amend the Higher Education Act to require higher education institutions to distribute information about the rights of pregnant students and the resources available to them at the school, via their website, student handbooks, emails, and during student orientations. 
  • Reinforce current law requiring schools to adopt and publish procedures for students to file complaints of discrimination related to their sex, pregnancy, or parental status by imploring colleges to make these existing protections and accommodations more widely known. 
  • Require every higher education institution to complete and submit an annual survey of its students to gather information about how pregnant students used their campus resources and Title IX violations. 

Want more information? 
May 2022: Rubio, Colleagues Introduce Pregnant Students Rights Act