Saturday, June 30, 2007

New Hampshire Repeals Parental Notification Law for Minor Abortion

New Hampshire has repealed its law requiring that parents be notified before a pregnant teen can have an abortion.

Such parental notification or parental consent laws have been deemed Constitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court only if they include a "judicial override." This override would enable mature teens or teens for whom it would be in their best interest to obtain the requisite consent from the judge to have an abortion without notifying their parents. (See Bellotti v. Baird.)

Teen abortion is a particularly complex issue because it concerns more than just child advocacy. One could be a child advocate and either pro-choice or anti-abortion. Even further complicating the issue is that one could be pro-choice and still feel that minors should have to notify their parents.

The New Hampshire law was not actually implemented because of earlier court challenges. (Read cnn.com article.) Reportedly, the New Hampshire law did not adequately provide for protection of the minor's health.

I hope that amidst the competing political outlooks, religious sentiments, and moral compulsions the New Hampshire legislators can keep the key issue in sight. Hopefully this can remain an issue about the health and well-being of teens, and not become just another political battlefield.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If my child may not have an aspirin without consent, then why may she have a surgery (abortion)? I think the legistlators who approved this must have had a lobotomy- with their consent, of course, as adults.

2:21 PM  

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