Oklahoma's Extreme Parental Notification Law Goes into Effect
Today, an extreme anti-choice policy to make it even harder for young women to get an abortion in Oklahoma goes into effect.
This new law will impact women regardless of their personal, private circumstances.
Oklahoma already has several anti-choice laws on the books, including a 48-hour forced waiting period and a parental-notice mandate before a woman can get abortion care. With these new restrictions now in force, in order for a young woman to get an abortion in Oklahoma, her parents also must provide a government-issued ID and a notarized statement of consent.
That's not all. Young women who have good reason not to include a parent in their decision to have an abortion are forced to get permission from the government. If, for example, a young woman fears violence if she tells her parents about her pregnancy, in order to access abortion care without notifying her parents, a judge must determine through "clear and convincing evidence" that she is "mature and capable...based upon her experience level, perspective, and judgment."
Because a young woman may be too immature for an abortion, yet she's somehow mature enough for parenthood? That makes entirely no sense.
Anti-choice proponents of these laws may say a judicial bypass is a reasonable "alternative", but that couldn't be further from the truth. Not long ago in Nebraska a young woman was denied an abortion because the judge ruled she was "not mature enough," and that getting an abortion would "kill the child inside" her.
Check out our graphic of states that have laws requiring women to get permission from a judge before getting abortion care if she feels she cannot share her unplanned pregnancy with her parents:
While we sincerely hope that all young women are able to turn to their parents for support when facing an unplanned pregnancy, sadly, that's not always the case. We should protect those who feel they can't talk to their parents - not put them in a potentially dangerous situation. These types of laws are being passed across the country.
Not only do these horrible anti-choice policies block a woman's constitutional right to choose, they also put our young women in difficult situations right in harm's way.