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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

CONTACT:

NAF Communications Department
202-667-5881
press@prochoice.org

The National Abortion Federation Condemns Passage of the Teen Endangerment Act

Saporta: This legislation puts our teens at risk by preventing them from receiving the help they need from trusted family and friends. As a result, these teens may delay seeking care or pursue dangerous alternatives.

Washington, DC - Vicki Saporta, President and CEO of the National Abortion Federation, released the following statement tonight condemning the U.S. Senate's passage of the Teen Endangerment Act by a vote of 65-34:

Tonight, Senators chose anti-choice politics over protecting the health and safety of our teens with their passage of the Child Custody Protection Act (CCPA), more aptly called the Teen Endangerment Act. The Teen Endangerment Act would make it a federal crime for a person other than a parent to help a minor from certain states obtain an abortion in another state if the minor has not fulfilled the parental involvement requirements of her home state.

In most instances, parents know about their teenager's decision to terminate an unplanned pregnancy. However, restrictive legislation does not necessarily foster good family communications. Unfortunately, parental involvement is not a realistic option for many teens who come from homes that are emotionally or physically abusive, or for those who are victims of rape and incest. This bill would endanger teens by eliminating safe alternatives to parental involvement. Aunts, sisters, grandmothers, clergy, counselors, and friends could be fined or imprisoned for helping a teen who may be a victim of family abuse, rape, or incest.

This legislation puts our teens at risk by preventing them from receiving the help they need from trusted family and friends. As a result, these teens may delay seeking care or pursue dangerous alternatives.

The legislation passed by the Senate tonight differs from that passed by the U.S. House of Representatives last year, therefore the two bills will be reconciled in a conference committee. When the final legislation comes before President Bush, we will urge him to veto this callous, unconstitutional legislation.

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The National Abortion Federation (NAF) is the professional association of abortion providers in the United States and Canada. Our mission is to ensure safe, legal, and accessible abortion care to promote health and justice for women. Our members include health care professionals at clinics, doctors' offices, and hospitals, who together care for more than half the women in both countries who choose abortion each year. For more information, visit our website at www.prochoice.org

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