A Department of Human Services caseworker pressured a pregnant Mayfair [Pennsylvania] teenager to undergo a late-term abortion by threatening to take away either her toddler or her unborn baby if she had the child, according to the teen's foster mother.
UPDATE 5/6/10: Girl's 'forced' abortion blamed on government 'death panel'
-- From "Did DHS pressure teen to get abortion?" by Regina Medina, Philadelphia Daily News 5/3/10
The alleged strong-arm tactic happened one day after DHS learned of the pregnancy, when the girl was about 22 weeks pregnant, according to her foster mother and the girl's social worker, Marisol Rivera.
The foster mother did not want to be identified in order to protect the girl's identity.
The Daily News also learned that:
* DHS got a Family Court judge's order allowing it to take the girl for an abortion, after the girl's birth mother refused to approve the procedure.
* By the time DHS arranged for the abortion - in March - the girl was 24 weeks pregnant. She had to undergo the procedure in New Jersey because abortions in Pennsylvania are illegal at 24 weeks.
* Although it is DHS policy that a DHS worker accompany any minor who has a court-ordered medical procedure, this did not happen on the girl's first attempt to have the abortion. That attempt failed when the clinic wouldn't accept her Medicaid card and wanted cash, according to the foster mother. A DHS worker did accompany the girl on a later, successful, attempt.
* Rivera, the girl's social worker, said that she was fired by Concilio, which subcontracted with DHS to provide care, after she initially refused to accompany the teen for the abortion.
"They hired me to work in child protection, not to kill children," Rivera told the Daily News.
To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.