Florida Governor Signs Bill Requiring Minors to Get Parental Consent to Get an Abortion

BY Michael Wing TIMEJuly 3, 2020 PRINT

On Tuesday, June 30, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed into law state bill SB 404, which requires teenagers under the age of 18 to obtain permission from their parents or legal guardians before having an abortion.

The new law also strengthens penalties for those who perform abortions but do not provide lifesaving care to infants who survive the procedure, according to Live Action.

In February, the bill received solid support both from members of the Florida House and Senate, stated a press release. The House voted 75 to 43 in favor of HB 265, and the Senate passed SB 404 with a vote of 23 to 17.

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Gov. Ron DeSantis attends an event at the Freedom Tower, where he named Barbara Lagoa to the Florida Supreme Court on Jan. 9, 2019, in Miami, Florida. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Two republicans, state Sen. Kelli Stargel and state Rep. Erin Grall, were responsible for sponsoring the bill.

Last year, a similar bill was passed in the House but died in the Senate.

Passing a law requiring parental consent for abortion has been a long and arduous battle stretching back decades. The Florida Supreme Court struck down a similar law in 1989, the release said.

Regarding the new legislation, Florida Right to Life President Lynda Bell has this to say:

“While we (the pro-life community) believe it to be unthinkable that a minor child can undergo an elective surgical procedure without a parent’s permission, pro-abortion organizations fought with zeal to stop this common sense legislation.

“Let’s look at areas where parental permission is required regarding children. An underage child must have permission to get their ears pierced, get a tattoo, take an aspirin, or go on a field trip with their school.

“Logically, it is absurd that a child can be ushered off to an abortion clinic with no parental permission! In fact, abortion is the only elective surgical procedure that can be done without a parent’s permission.”

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(Illustration – Lopolo/Shutterstock)

Polling also showed that Floridians overwhelmingly support requiring parental consent for abortion; even among those who consider themselves “pro-choice,” 73 percent are in favor of the legislation, the release added.

Senate bill sponsor Sen. Kelli Stargel said the legislation is “not a pro-choice or pro-life bill,” adding, “This is about whether or not you’re going to have adults involved in difficult decisions with children.”

Meanwhile, House sponsor Rep. Erin Grall rebutted pro-abortion assertions that “it is unfair for male-dominated legislative bodies to impose laws on women and girls,” according to the Palm Beach Post.

“No one group of people, gender of people owns this issue,” she said. “There is, consistently, an acknowledgement that what we are talking about is a child. And here, what we are talking about is a child who is carrying a child.”

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An exam room sits empty in the Planned Parenthood Reproductive Health Services Center on May 28, 2019, in St. Louis, Missouri. (Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images)
Michael Wing
Editor and Writer
Michael Wing is a writer and editor based in Calgary, Canada, where he was born and educated in the arts. He writes mainly on culture, human interest, and trending news.
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