FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 06/07/2017
Gov. Abbott Grants Sen. Kolkhorst and Rep. Thierry's Request To Include Maternal Mortality In The Special Session
Rep. Thierry Successfully Adds Maternal Mortality Legislation To The Upcoming Special Session
Governor Abbott grants Representative Shawn Thierry's written appeal to include maternal mortality as legislative item to the call.
(Austin, Texas): On Tuesday, June 6, 2017, Governor Abbott officially announced a special session calling back the state's legislators to Austin on July 18th. After a controversial 85th Session, today's announcement of was highly anticipated and watched. In a bipartisan effort, Representative Thierry submitted a poignant letter with Senator Kolkhorst, to Governor Abbott identifying the urgency of the maternal mortality epidemic in Texas. The letter requested that the issue be added to any Special Session called.
Rep. Thierry stated, "It was clear that a special session was going to happen and we now know that our Texas mothers are dying during childbirth at the highest rates in the nation. This time around, we cannot afford for party politics to stand in the way of resolving this crisis."
Since the beginning of the 85th session, Representative Thierry, made it a legislative priority to reduce the pregnancy-related deaths in Texas. She authored House Bill 2403, which directed the Maternal Mortality Task Force to study the health conditions and factors that disproportionately affect the most at risk population of women in Texas. Although the bill passed unanimously out of the Public Health Committee, it did not make it to the finish line of the House Chamber. In an unyielding commitment, Thierry worked across the aisle with Senator Lois Kolkhorst, who filed Senate Bill 1929, which would have extended the statutory authority of the Task Force and examined the causes of maternal mortality. Unfortunately, lightning struck twice, as SB 1929 also died in the conference committee process between the Senate and the House.
"Although I am disappointed by a number of the other issues placed on the call, I will work to find common ground with legislatures and stakeholders who are dedicated to resolving the maternal mortality crisis in our state," said Rep. Thierry.
Joint Senator Kolkhorst Rep. Thierrry Letter to Governor