by Steven Ertelt
September 5, 2006
Austin, TX (LifeNews.com) — The state of Texas has made the state’s parental consent law on abortions more effective. Not only are parents required to sign off on a teenager’s abortion before she can have one, they must get the form notarized. The requirement ensures that the form is not manipulated by forgery.
The Texas Medical Board finalized the parental consent form last week for women under 18 seeking an abortion.
The state legislature approved the parental consent law in 2005 and pro-life Gov. Rick Perry signed the measure into law. However, the measure the legislature approved did not require notarization.
The new form, with its new requirement, will take effect 20 days after it is published in the Texas Register, which is expected to happen in the next two weeks.
Joe Pojman, executive director of Texas Alliance for Life, said the new requirement will result in a drop in abortions on teenagers 17 year-old and younger who are subject to the law.
"This new TMB rule goes a long way to prevent the fraud like we have already seen in Texas," Pojman added in comments sent to LifeNews.com.
"In April, a pro-life investigator called a Houston abortion facility saying that she wanted to schedule an abortion for a young girl," Pojman explained. "The abortion facility staff coached the caller on how to circumvent the parental consent law by bringing someone to fraudulently sign for a parent at the facility where an illegal abortion would be performed."
The new form requires the signatures of the abortion practitioner, the parent or guardian and the minor girl seeking the abortion.
Abortion advocates oppose making sure parental consent forms are properly notarized to ensure the authenticity of the parents’ signatures.
"This is the result of political pressure from [pro-life] organizations," Emily Snooks, spokeswoman of Planned Parenthood of North Texas, told the Star Telegram newspaper in response to the change.
The new forms also include information about the medical risks of an abortion and provide other "right to know" information to women that abortion centers are not likely to tell them.
Prior to the new parental consent law, abortion businesses were required to notify a teen’s parents before an abortion could be done. The consent law has been in effect for a year and the medical board has been slow to create the new form because of debate between abortion advocates and pro-life groups on what it should say.
Related web sites:
Texas Alliance for Life – https://www.texasallianceforlife.org