After years of abortionists' and other liberals' court battles against this new law, abortion clinics must now notify a parent or guardian for girls 17 and younger; critics claim minors will now seek back-alley abortions.
-- From "Illinois parental notification law goes into effect Tuesday" by Sara Olkon, Chicago Tribune reporter 11/2/09
The state parental notification law, scheduled to take effect Tuesday, has been subject to legal challenges and revisions for more than 30 years. In July, a federal appeals court in Chicago lifted a federal injunction on a 1995 version of the law, clearing it for enforcement. In August, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation granted doctors a 90-day grace period before the law would go into effect.
In Illinois, a parent or guardian does not have to give consent for the procedure, but they would need to be notified that a teenager is planning to have an abortion. The laws often are stricter outside of the state.
With some exceptions, doctors performing abortions in Indiana, Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin must have parental consent before going ahead with the procedure. Iowa requires notification only.
Critics of the notification law believe it's unconstitutional and that it will harm minors by preventing them from obtaining safe abortions or forcing them to carry their pregnancies to term. [Studies prove otherwise.] Most teenagers already involve their parents in the decision, abortion rights advocates say. Those who don't, they argue, have good reason.
No notice is required in a medical emergency or if the girl declares in writing that she is a victim of sexual abuse. And a provision in the law allows girls to bypass parental notification by going before a judge, who would then have 48 hours to rule on the petition.
The Illinois civil rights group has been training lawyers and advocates on how to shepherd girls through the court procedure. The group also created a Facebook profile and a Web page, ilbypasscoordinationproject.org, to provide information.
To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.