Supreme Court hears abortion debate

Supreme Court hears abortion debate

SPRINGFIELD -- The ACLU is fighting a state law requiring minor girls tell their parents before getting an abortion.
SPRINGFIELD -- The ACLU is fighting a state law requiring minor girls tell their parents before getting an abortion. The issue landed in the State Supreme Court. WCIA-3's Ashley Michels follows the story.

Abortions are one of the most heated political topics. But, this time, the debate isn't over the procedure itself. It's about who knows when it happens. The law says those under 18 can't get one unless a parent is notified.

"It's the state's mandated nature of this that is harmful to young women."

"We think it's outrageous that parents of minors, especially younger minors, have no legal say in even knowing whether or not their child is going to have an abortion."

It passed almost 20-years ago, but has been tied up in court ever since. So, it's never been enforced. The issue comes down to safety. Supporters say the girls are too young to go it alone.

"Oftentimes the parents, especially of younger minors, will be familiar with the medical history of the minor that the minor herself might not know is relevant."

Like an allergy to medicine. But, critics say it can hurt the girls in a much different way.

"Not every family is like yours or mine. There are young women who, because they have to, because they are forced by a state law to involve a parent, are beaten, are kicked out of their home, are forced to carry their pregnancy to term."

The law does not require parental approval though.

"This is not about moving parents out of the decision."

"It's still the minor's decison."

Now it's up to the Illinois Supreme Court. If it keeps the law, it's all over. If it's struck down, it returns to a lower court to determine an alternative.
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