1845 Rep. Anderson (R-131) Springfield
This bill changes
the requirements for parental consent for a minor to have an abortion.
This bill adds unnecessary steps to an already comprehensive
consent process. Current state law already
dictates a strict informed consent process that must be completed in person and
24 hours before any abortion services are provided, regardless of age. Current law also mandates teens under 18 have
the consent of one parent before accessing abortion in Missouri. This bill would require the
Department of Health and Senior Services to create separate, duplicative,
informed consent processes for teens and consenting parents. A woman
should have accurate information about all of her options. Information
should support a woman, help her make a decision for herself, and enable her to
take care of her health and well-being. It should not be provided with
the intent of shaming, coercing, or making a woman change her mind. HB1845
clearly singles out teens and requires physicians to provide the teen with
information intended to coerce and shame her into changing her mind.
not all teens come from homes where good family communication is possible. Parents
rightfully want to be involved in their teenagers' lives, and the good news is
the majority of teens do go to their parents when faced with an unintended
pregnancy. Yet, some teens live with
violent or abusive parents and do not feel safe talking to their parents about
serious issues such as unintended pregnancy.
In the real world, no law can mandate family communication. Instead, this requirement could cause a
scared teen to put her safety at risk or do something desperate
that would endanger her health.
medical organizations oppose forced parental involvement laws. Parental consent and notification laws are opposed
by major medical groups including the American Medical Association, American
Academy of Pediatrics and the American Public Health Association because
research has shown they 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.