Florida Abortion Advocates File Suit Against Parental Notification Measure
by Steven Ertelt
August 2, 2004
Tallahassee, FL (LifeNews.com) — If abortion advocates in Florida get their way, voters in the Sunshine State will not be able to vote on a measure that would amend the state constitution and allow parents to be able to know when their teenage daughters are considering an abortion.
The ACLU and Planned Parenthood filed suit on Monday to prevent the amendment from appearing on the November ballot.
They argue the wording of the amendment is misleading, claiming that it tells voters the amendment promotes privacy when, in their view, it violates it.
”The public is being intentionally misled by the Legislature,” Randall Marshall, the ACLU’s legal director, told the Miami Herald newspaper.
"I think what the Legislature is doing … is to jeopardize the health and the safety and sometimes the lives of young women on the altar of anti-abortion politics," ACLU Executive Director Howard Simon told reporters Monday.
If approved by Florida voters, the measure would authorize state lawmakers to pass a parental notification law. The Florida Supreme Court has struck down previous attempts claiming it violates the privacy clause of the state constitution.
"Parents need to know when someone performs surgery on their daughters," says Robin Hoffman, President of Florida Right to Life.
"Teens have experienced serious complications and death from legal abortions in Florida. Evidence shows that after parental involvement laws are put in effect, the teenage pregnancy rate goes down, the teenage abortion rate goes down, and the teenage birthrate goes down," Hoffman explained.
"In Florida, if your daughter is under 18, she cannot get a tattoo, get an aspirin at school or go on a school trip without you knowing it," Hoffman told LifeNews.com. "But your underage daughter can get a surgical abortion without you knowing it."
The constitutional amendment languages says it "shall not limit or deny the privacy rights guaranteed to minors" under the U.S. Constitution.