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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wednesday, November 8, 2006

CONTACT:

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

National Abortion Federation Applauds Rejection of Parental Notification Ballot Initiative in Oregon

Washington, DC - Oregon voters rejected Measure 43, a parental notification law that would have required 48-hour written notice to a parent before a teen between the ages of 15-17 had an abortion. Oregon law already requires teens who are 14 or under to obtain parental consent for any medical treatment.

Measure 43 contained no exceptions for survivors of rape or incest, or for teens in abusive homes. Instead, Measure 43 would have subjected teens to a complicated judicial bypass process.

"Parental notification laws like Measure 43 endanger the health and safety of teens," National Abortion Federation (NAF) President and CEO Vicki Saporta said. "We are pleased that Oregon voters again recognized that such restrictions put our most vulnerable teens at risk."

While we understand that parents want to be involved in the decisions of their teenage daughters, good family communication cannot be legislated. In most instances, whether teens live in a state with a parental involvement law or not, parents know about a teen's decision to terminate a pregnancy. Unfortunately, involving a parent is not a realistic option for many young women who come from homes that are emotionally or physically abusive, or for those who are victims of rape or incest. Other teens may not want to involve their parents for fear of disappointing them. Rather than tell their parents, some young women resort to dangerous alternatives.

In 1990, Oregon voters narrowly rejected a parental notification initiative by a margin of 52 percent to 48 percent. Measure 43 was opposed by NAF and other medical authorities including the Oregon Medical Association, the Oregon chapter of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the Oregon Nurses Association.

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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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