A new initiative is being proposed in California to stop teenage girls from obtaining “secret” abortions under pressure from the older adult men who get them pregnant.
The proposed plan called “Sarah’s Law—the Teen Safety and Stop Predators Act,” is named after Sarah, a young girl who decided to have an abortion without her family’s knowledge. Her cervix was torn during the procedure and she died as a result.
The initiative that will be on the California ballot for November 2008 reads, “The People of California have a compelling interest in protecting minors from the known risks of secret abortions, including the danger of not obtaining prompt care for health- and life-threatening complications when a minor’s parent or responsible family member is unaware that she has undergone a secret abortion. The People also have a compelling interest in preventing sexual predators from using secret abortions to conceal sexual exploitation of minors.”
If passed, this bill will expose the fact that many young girls are secretly getting abortions because they are being pressured to by the older, adult men who impregnate them.
Also, instead of emphasizing parental notification, family notification will be stressed. If the girl signs a statement that she has a parental abuse history, the clinic can notify another relative such as a grandmother, aunt, stepfather or an adult sibling.
Based on research on other notification laws in other states, this initiative will cut the teen abortion rate as well as the teen pregnancy rate.