News Abortion

Super-Sized Parental Consent Bills Pass Oklahoma Senate Committee (CORRECTED)

Robin Marty

Both bills aim to make judicial bypass a thing of the past for Oklahoma teens.

Correction, April 10, 3:20 pm: A version of this article incorrectly stated that the bills had passed the state senate and were headed to the governor. In fact, they have passed a senate committee.

Two Oklahoma bills designed to correct what anti-choice activists claim was a far too lenient system for minors seeking abortions have passed an Oklahoma senate committee and will now head to the full senate for a vote. As such, the newest hurdles for teenagers in Oklahoma who wish to terminate a pregnancy may soon include showing photo IDs, getting judicial bypass only in the county they live in, and getting no judicial bypass at all except when they’ve been sexually abused by a parent.

Together, the two bills would create the most restrictive atmosphere in the nation for teens who want to end a pregnancy, creating enough barriers that many teens, especially those who are from low-income or undocumented families, will have no choice but to give birth. Eliminating judicial bypass altogether, then adding a requirement that only a parent with a photo ID can provide consent, would curb safe abortion access for teens whose legal guardians have no valid ID because of economic hardship or immigration status. These families may be unable to give state-mandated “consent,” despite their approval or support of the teen’s decision.

These bills, as well as a bill to greatly increase the reporting requirements for doctors who provide abortions, are headed to the full state senate for a vote before potentially making their way to Republican Gov. Mary Fallin’s desk, in which case she is expected to sign them into law.

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