Tuesday, January 21st, 2014
WEEK TWO OF THE 2014 MISSOURI SESSION
Only two weeks into the Missouri legislative session and another handful of additional anti-women’s health bills have been filed and two received hearings.
On Wednesday, January 15th the House Health Care Policy Committee had a hearing on the Teen Endangerment bill, HB1192, sponsored by Rep. Miller (R-124). This bill requires BOTH custodial parents of a minor to be notified in writing 7 days prior to the performance of an abortion. State law already requires a female under the age of 18 to obtain written informed consent of one parent or guardian prior to an abortion. No law can mandate family communication. Adding administrative obstacles that are nearly insurmountable to the teen can force them to take matters into their own hands.
In an effort to promote evidence-based policy, Dr. Colleen McNicholas (Physicians for Reproductive Health) informed the committee that parental consent and notification laws are opposed by major medical groups. This includes the American Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Public Health Association because research has shown that these laws do not increase parental involvement, do not foster healthy communication, and in fact can be very detrimental to the health and safety of young women. The committee will continue to hear testimony on HB1192 on Wednesday, January 22nd at noon.
HB1103 sponsored by Rep. Gatschenberger (R-108) was also heard at committee on January 15th. HB 1103 would place Pregnancy Resource Centers (PRCs) above any safety or privacy regulation. PRCs are on record providing false and misleading information to vulnerable women and are currently not required to provide medically factual or accurate information to them. The committee did not go into executive session to vote on these bills on January 15th.
Tomorrow, the House Health Care Policy Committee will also be hearing testimony on two different bills that extend the current state mandated delay prior to having an abortion from 24 to 72 hours. The two bills are HB1307, sponsored by Rep. Elmer (R-99) and HB1313, sponsored by Rep. Frederick (R-121). Senator Sater (R-28) also filed a similar bill in the Senate. SB519 has been assigned to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The current informed consent process for abortion in Missouri is exceedingly rigorous. Before a woman can access abortion in Missouri, she must face a 24 hour mandatory delay, a two visit requirement, and must be presented with state mandated information—some of which isn’t even accurate. Forcing a woman to wait even longer before accessing medical care does nothing to improve her health and will push her abortion later in pregnancy.
Rep. Tim Jones (R-110) filed HB1430 last week. The Denial of Care bill is very similar to HB496 that was filed by Jones during the 2013 legislative session. HB1430 is designed to protect and encourage those who refuse to provide critical reproductive health services to women in Missouri. This bill unnecessarily expands the law to protect and encourage the denial of birth control (including emergency contraception to rape survivors), sterilization, assisted reproduction and stem cell research. Science – not politics – should determine medical decisions.
CELEBRATING 41 YEARS OF SAFE AND LEGAL ABORTION
On January 22, 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed that the constitutionally protected right to privacy includes every woman's right to make her own personal medical decisions, without the interference of politicians. Tomorrow marks the 41st anniversary of Roe, Planned Parenthood recognizes the need for continued access to safe and legal abortion for a woman if and when she needs to consider it. Abortion is a deeply personal and often complex decision. Ultimately, decisions about whether to choose adoption, end a pregnancy, or raise a child must be left to a woman, her family, and her faith, with the counsel of her doctor or health care provider.
Reviewing the current Missouri bill summary, it is obvious that politicians still insist on interfering with a woman's personal decision. Planned Parenthood Advocates fights these efforts on every level. From courthouses to statehouses to Capitol Hill to the grassroots, we work to protect access to reproductive health care through education of elected officials, litigation, and mobilization of more than seven million Planned Parenthood activists, donors, supporters, and patients. If you want to take action to protect women’s health, please consider attending one of our lobby days this session and or attend an upcoming Roe event in your area!
ROE EVENTS IN MISSOURI
For 41 years, access to safe and legal abortion has been the law of the land. Check out the upcoming events to celebrate the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade.
St. Louis: As part of the Missouri Freedom of Choice Council, Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region invites you to a Cocktail Reception in Celebration of the Anniversary of Roe v. Wade on Thursday, January 23rd from 6-8 p.m. at ACLU-MO’s St. Louis office located at 454 Whittier Street. Tickets can be purchased at the door for $10, $35, $50, or $75. Contributions will pay for buses to take advocates to Jefferson City for a pro-women's health lobby day. For more information or to RSVP, contact Jillian at firstname.lastname@example.org or 314-531-7526 ext. 334.
Kansas City: Join Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri Wednesday January 22nd from 6:30-8:30PM for a film screening and panel discussion, featuring:
Kansas Representative Barbara Bollier, MD, (R-25)
Location: PPKM Administrative Office, 4401 W. 109th St. Suite #200 Overland Park, KS 66211
Springfield: Join Planned Parenthood in Southwest Missouri to
celebrate the 41st anniversary of the Roe
v. Wade Supreme Court decision.
OUR FIRST LOBBY DAY UNDER THE DOME is January 28th, 2014
For more information
on upcoming lobby days, contact: