Parents are given responsibility for, and authority over, their children in almost all cases. In the case of abortion, however, girls as young as 12 are being given abortions in secret, with no need to tell their parents. This blatant disregard for parental care and authority in Canada needs to be changed. Parental consent is required for everything from getting a tattoo to going on a school field trip, yet teens can have surgery conducted and end an unborn baby’s life without parental awareness?
It’s time for us to bring our laws in line with decades of common law, and common sense. Parental notification and consent should be mandatory for girls under the age of 16 seeking an abortion. Parents need to be informed so they can counsel their daughters, as well as get them the medical care that may be needed during and after the pregnancy. Abortion potentially has both physical and psychological side effects, and parents are best positioned to act in the best interest of their daughters (and potential grandchildren). Keeping parents out of the picture isolates young teens at a particularly vulnerable time, leaving them open to pressure from virtually anyone attempting to influence their decision.
Consent and notification laws are one way to show that families are valuable, protecting both parental rights and the best interests of children.