Parental Rights

Parental Rights

January 2, 2013


Illinois Supreme Court Hears Arguments in 1995 Parental Notification Law

September 20, 2012

The Illinois Supreme Court today heard arguments over the constitutionality of a seventeen-year-old parental notification law that never went into effect because of a legal challenge brought immediately upon enactment. The case has bounced around the state’s courts ever since.

In 1995 the Illinois legislature passed the “Parental Notice of Abortion Act,” which was so permissive that even the then-Governor, pro-abortion Jim Edgar, agreed to affix his signature. In June of that year, the ACLU quickly persuaded a federal judge to grant a restraining order just hours after Edgar had signed the measure into law.

Under the law, when the girl is under 18, two days before an abortion is to be performed the abortionist must tell a parent, step-parent living in the household, grandparent, or legal guardian. A judge can waive notice if he/she determines the minor is “sufficiently mature” to make the abortion decision or if notification is not in her “best interest.”

The justices heard arguments this morning in a law suit brought by the ACLU to declare the law unconstitutional. According to the Thomas More Society, which seeks to intervene in defense of the law, “The ACLU brings claims that the law is a violation of the Illinois State Constitution of 1970, even though the Act was upheld as constitutional after a lengthy federal litigation that concluded three years ago.”

Source: National Right to Life News Today

Study: Pro-Life Parental Involvement Laws Reduce Teen-Suicide Rates

May 11, 2012

This spring the journal Economic Inquiry published a study by Joseph Sabia and Daniel Reese which found very solid evidence that pro-life parental involvement laws reduce the suicide rate for teen females. This peer-reviewed study is both methodologically rigorous and well done. Analyzing state-level suicide data from 1987 to 2003 and holding constant both state-level trends and a range of economic and demographic factors, it finds that parental involvement laws reduce the suicide rate for teen females anywhere from 11 to 21 percent. The authors argue that this is because parental involvement laws reduce the incidence of stressful life events. These include unprotected sexual intercourse, STDs, pregnancies, and abortions.

Overall, this study contributes to a growing body of peer-reviewed research which documents the positive public-health impact of pro-life parental-involvement laws. There exist at least 16 peer-reviewed studies which find that parental involvement laws result in statistically significant reductions in the in-state abortion rate for minors. Obviously some minors circumvent these laws by obtaining abortions in states without such laws. However, every study that tracks both in-state and out-of-state abortions finds that the in-state decline significantly exceeds the out-of-state increase.


Ohio Passes Law Limiting Abortions for Minors

November 5, 2011

Ohio Governor John Kasich on Friday signed into law House Bill 63, creating further restrictions on minors if they seek an abortion without parental consent. The new law puts several conditions in place, advancing the former law of making a minor receive a judge’s consent to have an abortion without parental notification. Now, judges may only permit abortion in cases where they have “clear and convincing evidence” that the abortion is in the best interest of the young woman after a hearing on the record. The hearing must be held within five days after petitioning the court for an abortion.

Source: JURIST

Arizona Law Leads to Fewer Abortions

October 13, 2011

A newly enacted Arizona law appears to be having an immediate and dramatic effect on the number of abortions performed statewide.

The Abortion Consent Act, passed by the Legislature in 2009, took effect shortly after the Arizona Court of Appeals ruled it constitutional in a 3-0 decision on Aug. 11. The law mandates that minors seeking abortions must provide a notarized parental signature; that women be provided with full, accurate information by a doctor in person at least 24 hours before the procedure takes place; that only doctors can perform surgical abortions; and that no medical professional can be forced to perform an abortion if doing so violates his or her religious or moral beliefs.

The state reported Wednesday that only 729 abortions were performed statewide in September – about 30 percent less than in August.

Source: CitizenLink

Alaska Judge Rules That Issues in Abortion Notification Law Should Be Heard at February Trial

October 3, 2011

A judge has decided that opponents of an Alaska law requiring parents be
notified when their daughters want abortions will get their day in
court and be fully heard.

Anchorage Superior Court Judge John Suddock on Friday rejected the
state’s attempt to have certain issues tossed from a lawsuit to be heard
Feb. 13.


Pro-Life Laws Go Into Effect in Arizona

September 12, 2011

Challenged provisions of a 2009 law restricting abortions in Arizona
took effect today because Planned Parenthood Arizona decided against
appealing a state-court ruling denying its earlier challenge to the law.
As a result, the new provisions begin today.

They include:

  • Requiring a woman seeking an abortion to meet in person with a doctor 24 hours before the scheduled abortion.
  • Allowing only physicians to perform first-trimester surgical abortions.
  • Requiring that parental consent for minors seeking an abortion be notarized.
  • Allowing health-care workers, including pharmacists, to decline to
    provide information or access to abortion, emergency contraception or
    birth control based on their personal beliefs.

Citing a shortage of physicians and other factors, Planned Parenthood
said it has already scaled back its abortion services in response to the
new restrictions.

Source: The Arizona Republic

Alaska Judge Hears Arguments in Parental Notification Lawsuit

September 9, 2011

Alaska’s parental notice law for minors undergoing abortions has been
the focus of a lengthy legal battle. The lawsuit, which was brought by
Planned Parenthood and two doctors, is expected to reach the Alaska
Supreme Court.

A provision in the law requires corroboration if a girl is pregnant as a
result of sexual abuse. Planned Parenthood argues that this provision
is too burdensome.

Source: Anchorage Daily News

Parental Consent and Telemed Abortion Ban Take Effect in Nebraska

August 31, 2011

Tomorrow, two new laws affecting abortion will take effect in Nebraska. One requires girls 17 and under to obtain written, notarized consent from a parent before having an abortion, and the other prevents doctors from prescribing and opening containers of abortion-causing drugs at remote locations over the Internet, referred to as “telemedicine.”

According to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, approximately 143 of the 2,464 abortions statewide last year were performed on minors. No abortions were done through telemedicine, but Nebraska Right to Life lobbied for the ban nonetheless after seeing the practice spread in neighboring Iowa.

Source: Illinois Federation for Right to Life

New Hampshire Lawmakers Pass Parental Notification Bill Over Veto

June 22, 2011

The New Hampshire legislature today overrode Gov. John Lynch’s veto of a bill that requires abortionists to notify parents of minors 48 hours before conducting the procedure. The House overrod the veto by a 266-102 vote; the Senate vote was 17-7. “Granite Staters believe in more parental involvement, not less,” the House speaker, William O’Brien, said in a statement.