Is a parent's right to know more important than a teen's safety? As a parent of a teen daughter, I hope she would come to me with any major decision. However, if not, I would want her to have access to safe professional medical care and counseling. Can the government effectively mandate good family communication?
As a nurse who counsels pregnant teens, I strongly encourage them to notify at least one of their parents if they are considering abortion. Most do. However, there are some teens who do not have ideal family lives, and fear prevents them from communicating.
Proponents of this initiative state that there is a judicial bypass to help the teen who can't talk to her parents. Would a scared, vulnerable, pregnant teen be more likely to navigate the judicial system to ask a judge for permission? What if the judge is anti-abortion? If a teen has made the decision to abort, she will figure out a way, safely or not.
Until unplanned teen pregnancy disappears, please join me as well as the California Nurse's Association and the California Academy of Pediatrics in voting "no" on Proposition 85.
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Viki Wilson, R.N.