At this point we need folks to be at the hearing. We will send another alert later on to generate messages to legislations. Right now we need your presence. Be at the hearing room no later that 12:30 p.m. or earlier if you can. You will be given a button to wear in support of parental notification. _______
SB 5156 - PARENTAL NOTIFICATION BEFORE A MINOR'S ABORTION IS SCHEDULED FOR A HEARING FEBRUARY 6 AT 1:30 P.M. IN THE SENATE LAWS & JUSTICE COMMITTEE, SENATE HEARING RM 4, IN THE CHERBERG BLDG.
WE NEED YOU THERE TO PACK THE HEARING IN SUPPORT OF THE BILL
Parental involvement laws are based on a sound policy judgment: in areas of life, young people need the guidance of their parents in making important decisions; that includes decisions regarding abortion.
To protect a young girl from an abusive parent, or if the girl displays maturity beyond her years, states have enacted laws that allow judges to grant bypass orders, which permit the girl to have an abortion without informing a parent or guardian.
Across the country, polls show citizens favor parental consent laws by a wide margin. Such laws – even with a judicial by-pass option – respect the role parents play in the upbringing of their children.
Parental notification for abortion is about more than parent's rights and responsibilities. It is about protecting families. The state has a moral obligation to protect families which are the nucleus of society. Families exist prior to any state. But Washington State is one of only a handful of states that has no parental involvement laws on the books regarding abortion. None.
MYTHS & FACTS ABOUT PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT LAWS FROM AMERICANS UNITED FOR LIFE
Myth: Some teens do not even live with their parents. Involving the parents of these teens will be impossible and totally unrelated to the teen’s health.
Fact: Parental involvement legislation recognizes that many family situations are less than ideal. Alternative procedures are available through judicial bypass.
Myth: Mandatory parental involvement laws will force many teens to go out of state to obtain an abortion.
Fact: As more states enact and enforce parental involvement laws, the option to go out of state will cease to exist, and parental rights and protections for minors’ health will continue to expand. Migration to other states is a reason to pass parental involvement laws, not to avoid them.
Myth: Parental involvement laws simply delay teens from getting abortions until the second trimester, when abortion is more dangerous.
Fact: This myth is directly contrary to data from both Minnesota and Missouri. (14)
Myth: Parental involvement laws force teens to obtain dangerous illegal abortions.
Fact: The majority of states have working parental involvement laws. Only one case—that of Becky Bell in Indiana—has been suggested to involve an unsafe abortion, and even that case is wholly undocumented. The autopsy report failed to show any induced abortion. It is terrible public policy to fail to enact a law on the basis of an isolated, unproven case.
Myth: Parental involvement laws expose teens to the anger of abusive parents
Fact: Minors who fear abuse have the option of utilizing the judicial bypass procedure; further, in some states a teen who tells a physician that she has been abused or neglected is exempt from the law’s requirements entirely. In addition, parental involvement laws make it more likely that a minor who is being abused or neglected will get the help she needs; in most states, physicians who become aware of abuse claims must report the abuse allegation to public officials who conduct an anonymous investigation.
Myth: Most teens are mature enough to make their own decisions.
Fact: Young teens often have difficulty assessing long-term consequences and generally have narrow and egocentric views of their problems. (15)
Parental involvement is needed to give teenagers some perspective. Moreover, the question is not simply of maturity, but of responsibility. As long as a teenager is not emancipated, a parent or guardian is responsi ble for her medical care and upbringing. When a teen is injured by an abortion, it is the parent or guardian—not the teen—who is responsible for the teen’s care and health costs.
1 See C. Powell, Abortions for minors can’t be faced honestly, Journal inquirer (June 20, 2011), available at http:// www.journalinquirer.com/articles/2011/06/20/chris_powell/ doc4dff505706539708331340.txt#blogcomments (last visited Aug. 22, 2011).
2 Lydia Saad, Common State Abortion Restrictions Spark Mixed Reviews, Gallup, July 25, 2011, http://www.gallup.com/ poll/148631/Common-State-Abortion-Restrictions-SparkMixed-Reviews.aspx (last visited Aug. 22, 2011).
3 D. Haas-Wilson, The Impact of State Abortion Restrictions on Minors’ Demand for Abortions, J. human reSourCeS 31(1):140, 155 (1996).
4 M.J. New, The Effect of Parental Involvement Laws on the Incidence of Abortion Among Minors, inSighT 16-18 (Sept. 24, 2008).
5 Bellotti v. Baird (Bellotti I), 428 U.S. 132 (1976); Planned Parenthood v. Danforth, 428 U.S. 52 (1976); Bellotti v. Baird (Bellotti II), 443 U.S 622 (1979); H.L. v. Matheson, 450 U.S. 398 (1981); City of Akron v. Akron Ctr. for Reprod. Health (Akron I), 462 U.S. 416 (1983); Planned Parenthood v. Ashcroft, 462 U.S. 476 (1983); Hodgson v. Minnesota, 497 U.S 417 (1990); Ohio v. Akron Ctr. for Reprod. Health (Akron II), 497 U.S. 502 (1990); Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992); Lambert v. Wicklund, 520 U.S. 292 (1997); Ayotte v. Planned Parenthood, 546 U.S. 320 (2006).
6 The Supreme Court held in Lambert v. Wicklund that a “judicial bypass procedure requiring a minor to show that parental notification is not in her best interests is equivalent to a judicial bypass procedure requiring a minor to show that abortion without notification is in her best interests.” Lambert, 520 U.S. at 297 (emphasis added).
7 Id. at 291.
8 Akron II, 497 U.S.at 511; See also Hodgson, 497 U.S. at 461; Lambert, 520 U.S. at 295.
9 Casey, 505 U.S. at 899.
10 Id. at 879-80.
13 In the Matter of B.S., 74 P.3d 285 (Ariz. Ct. App. 2003).
14 J.L. Rogers et al., Impact of the Minnesota Parental Notification Law on Abortion and Birth, am J. Pub. healTh 81:294, 296 (1991); F.R. Jacot et al., A Five-Year Experience with SecondTrimester Induced Abortions: No Increases in Complication Rate as Compared to the First Trimester, am. J. obSTeT. gyneCol. 168:633 (Feb. 1993).
15 See generally J. Piaget & B. Inhelder, The PSyChology of The ChilD (1969).