Legislative Update: Week of April 1, 2024

State-Sanctioned Suicide Advances to the Senate

Last week, the New Hampshire House of Representatives, including many Republicans, ignored the voices of the disabled community, veterans, and concerned New Hampshire citizens of all ages and cast their vote to legalize state-sanctioned suicide. In a major disappointment for such an important issue, many representatives were not even present to vote. You can see the full roll call here33 Democrats voted against state-sanctioned suicide, 39 Republicans voted in favor.

HB 1283relative to end of life options passed by the closest of margins in the NH House last week, 179-177. A last-chance reconsideration motion brought to the House floor this week failed, and state-sanctioned suicide will now move on to the Senate, one step closer to becoming law in the state. 

On the grave matter of life or death, there should be no room for doubt. The state does not have a conscience, and the decision of who lives or dies should never be in the hands of government. In the end, HB 1283 does not promote choice or bodily autonomy.  Rather, it creates a climate that will destroy other options for end-of-life care and will empower the government to decide which lives are worth living. We only need look to Canada and other countries such as Britain and the Netherlands that have embraced physician assisted suicide to see the tragic roadmap ahead of us.


As the issue of state-sanctioned suicide advances to the Senate, we urge you to continue strong opposition of the bill, and stay tuned for more Cornerstone updates on key dates, including when the bill comes for a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Rally Against Assisted Suicide

A huge thank you to all the people who turned out a second time to rally for life and the protection of vulnerable Granite Staters! Our strong pro-life presence could not be missed by anyone at the State House.

Although we didn’t get the result we wanted, we hope our very visible witness to human dignity planted seeds in the hearts of the misguided and pray that our senators will reject HB 1283 when it comes up for a vote in their chamber.

Check out the photos below from the event!

Critical Advances for the Safe Haven Law Expansion

This week, the House missed a critical opportunity to position New Hampshire as the leader in child protections among our New England neighbors. The most important part of HB 1607, relative to expanded safe-haven protections, was removed on the House floor. Section 5 would have ensured parents surrendering a baby would not have to fear prosecution as a result of their surrender. It is critical and necessary to include this exclusionary provision in the expansion of safe haven law to accomplish the law’s goal, that is, to save lives, NOT catch criminals or deter parents from doing the right thing for their child.

We know of instances where mothers have turned away from making use of the safe haven law out of a real fear of prosecution. This either leads to an increase in illegal abandonment and chances for infant death through malnourishment, exposure, or overdose – or keeps an unwanted child in an unsafe and dangerous environment. Excluding the act of surrendering a child from being leveraged for prosecution does not preclude bringing a criminal to justice. Similar to proximate cause laws on the books, evidence to charge parents with a crime would need to be obtained in other ways, rightfully placing the child’s safety as a higher priority than a single avenue of evidence.

The House passed version of HB 1607 lacking the exclusionary clause does approve safe haven infant safety devices for 24-hour staffed facilities and allows babies to be surrendered until they are 61 days old.

However, work must still be done to protect at-risk babies from fatal abandonment or abuse. The Senate must re-insert the Section 5 exclusionary provisions of the bill to ensure parents are not discouraged from using this safe and secure means to surrender their unwanted child.


As the bill advances to the Senate, we ask you to continue your strong support of the bill, including urging lawmakers to reinstate the important exclusionary rule. Stay tuned for further updates and to learn when the bill is scheduled for a public hearing.

The Importance of State Recognition of Biological Sex

Several pieces of legislation seeking to address the issue of protecting women’s sports are being considered by the New Hampshire General Court with one, HB 396, uniquely positioned for passage. HB 396,  permitting classification of individuals based on biological sex under certain limited circumstances, narrowly survived the House and is now headed to the Senate for review. Meanwhile, the other related Senate bills await a vote in the Senate. If any of these Senate bills were to pass and move on to the House, their chances of success in the House appear narrow.

While other pending legislation focuses on sporting events alone, HB 396 provides for broader application by allowing “any person or organization, public or private” the opportunity to make a classification based on biological sex. This level of classification flexibility and protection is not present in any of the other bills.

HB 396 provides the most expansive framework to address these issues and has the greatest success of becoming law in New Hampshire. The Senate should strongly consider adopting HB 396 as an important first and needed step in clarifying the state’s ability to differentiate based on biological sex. This bill will pave the way for any person or organization, public or private, to protect women in the areas of sports, prisons and places of intimate privacy.


We encourage you to stay tuned for any updates on HB 396 as it advances to the Senate. Read more about this important issue and its priority in our blog post here.

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