New study shows parental involvement laws reduce abortions among minors


The Family Research Council (FRC) on Thursday released a study on the effectiveness of different parental involvement laws in reducing abortions among minors. According to the study’s findings, when a state enacts a parental involvement law the abortion rate for minors falls by an average of about 13.6 percent.

In a press release, FRC called the study the “first comprehensive analysis” of minor abortion data from nearly all 50 states between 1985 and 1990. The study, titled “The Effect of Parental Involvement Laws on the Incidence of Abortion Among Minors,” was authored by Dr. Michael New, Ph.D, a FRC Fellow and assistant professor of political science at the University of Alabama.

“This study is the first of its kind to compare different types of parental involvement laws,” New said. “The study finds that more protective parental involvement laws result in even larger declines in abortion rates.”

The FRC study surveys research findings on laws that require that parents be involved in the decision to abort a child, either through notification laws or by requiring their consent.

It also considers other possible factors in the decline of the abortion rate among minors, such as a stronger economy and increased teen abstinence.

“Laws that require parental consent instead of parental notification reduce the minor abortion rate by about 19 percent,” New reported. “Furthermore, laws that mandate the involvement of two parents, instead of just one parent, reduce the in-state abortion rate by approximately 31 percent.”

Saying that the overall abortion rate among minors in the United States fell by nearly half between 1985 and 1999, New said the study shows that parental involvement laws are an “important causal factor” in the decline.

According to New, Minnesota and Mississippi laws are among the most effective in reducing abortion rates among minors.

“The overwhelming evidence in support of parental involvement laws should be a boon to legislators everywhere," New claimed.

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