Legislative Committee Vote Is a Win for Teen Health and Safety Say’s NARAL

Dangerous Parental-Involvement Mandate Avoided

NEW HAVEN, CT – Christian Miron, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Connecticut, issued the following statement regarding yesterday’s Legislative Program Review and Investigations Committee (PRI) vote on the adolescent health study.

“This vote is a big win for young women’s health and safety. Anti-choice lawmakers intended to use this report as a vehicle to introduce a dangerous parental-notification bill into the legislature and thankfully, that didn’t happen,” Miron said. “Parental-notice mandates put teen’s health and safety at risk. Politicians cannot mandate healthy family communication where it does not exist.

“We believe that young people should consult their parents when facing an unintended pregnancy. Thankfully, most do,” Miron continued. “However, in some tragic situations, doing so simply isn’t realistic – or safe. Some young women come from homes where there is abuse or where they face violence. While this proposal may sound reasonable, imposing a one-size-fits-all mandate can be dangerous.”

While they did not pursue a parental-involvement mandate at the committee meeting, anti-choice legislator Rep. T.R. Rowe led an effort to strip the report of all recommendations related to reproductive health, which would have been a setback for young women’s access to preventive health-care.  Thankfully, their attempt was unsuccessful.

“It’s astounding that lawmakers like Rep. Rowe who claim to have the best interests of Connecticut’s youth at heart would try to eliminate measures that would help prevent unintended pregnancy, ” Miron said.  “If he was truly concerned about young women in our state, he would support the recommendations outlined in the adolescent health study.”

Miron applauded the formal recommendations made in the report, several of which would have a positive impact on teen’s reproductive health and safety in Connecticut. “It was encouraging to see recommendations based on sound science,” said Miron, referencing portions of the report emphasizing the benefits of comprehensive, age-appropriate sex education and the establishment of a program of incentive funding for districts in the state with the highest teen-pregnancy rates.