Illinois Judge Prevents Enforcement of Parental Notification Law on Abortion

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 7, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Illinois Judge Prevents Enforcement of Parental Notification Law on Abortion Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
February 7
, 2007

Springfield, IL ( — A federal judge has prevented immediate enforcement of an Illinois law requiring abortion facilities to tell a teenager’s parents when their daughter wants to have an abortion. The law had been on hold since the legislature passed it in 1995 because the state Supreme Court hadn’t approved the administrative rules for it.

The state’s high court finally completed action on the bill in September and, last month, Attorney General Lisa Madigan asked a federal court to enforce the law.

However, U.S. District Judge David Coar kept a previous legal order against it in place despite the new high court rules.

He said the state can’t put the law in place yet because the rules haven’t been implemented in all 102 counties.

According to an AP report, Judge Coar did not rule on the constitutionality of the parental notification law and he told Madigan that she could try to enforce it again once the implementation process is completed.

Lorie Chaiten, of the pro-abortion ACLU, told AP her group was pleased with the decision.

"We heard Judge Coar indicate today that he is not prepared to rule on allowing enforcement of the mandatory parental notification law until the courts across our state can ensure the process will protect the constitutional rights of young women as well as health and safety," she said.

Chaiten previously said her group doesn’t like the rules the state Supreme Court issued. She claims the rules make it too difficult for a teenager in an abusive situation to get permission for an abortion.

Teenagers can get a court-issued waiver of the parental notification requirement in abuse cases but the state’s high court didn’t issue rules on that saying it’s a matter for lower courts to decide.

Putting the law in place is important because abortion businesses have used the lack of parental involvement for years to lure teens from other states to their facilities for secret abortions.

In filing the legal papers last month asking for enforcement, Madigan said "As the chief legal officer of the State of Illinois, it is my duty to uphold the Constitution and to defend the laws of this state if they are constitutional."

"At this point, forty-four states have parental involvement laws, and courts have upheld many parental notice laws that are similar to the Act," she added.