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Hearing on Alaska Parental Notification Lawsuit Starts Today

Robin Marty

The state has one of the most restrictive laws for those under 18 in the nation.

A lawsuit against Alaska’s new parental notification law is being heard today, a court hearing that many think is just the first step to the Alaska Supreme Court.

Via the Houston Chronicle:

Janet Crepps, arguing on behalf of Planned Parenthood, said a provision in the law requiring corroboration if a girl is pregnant as a result of sexual abuse stands out when compared to other states’ parental notification laws. In such cases, a girl under age 18 is required to have their statement notarized and also must obtain notarized third-party corroboration of the alleged abuse.

“This is a really harsh requirement,” Crepps said after the hearing in Superior Court in which lawyers for the state tried to persuade Judge John Suddock to throw out certain challenges to the new law.

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The law would require a teen to notify their parents as well as wait 48 hours before obtaining an abortion, a hardship in such a large state with already so few providers and so little access to judges.  Adding the additional burden of forcing girls to obtain outside “corroboration” is just another ploy to make it even more onerous for girls to seek judicial bypass, which seems to be the author’s intention:  

“[Assistant Attorney General Margaret] Paton-Walsh told the judge there needs to be verification when claims of sexual abuse are being made. Otherwise, she said, girls could use the sexual abuse provision in the law to get around telling their parents they are pregnant.”

Sounds a lot like the “they’ll make up rape to get an abortion” argument re: why there should be no rape exceptions in abortion bans.

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