Massachusetts Pro-Abortion Advocacy Groups Want To Remove Parental Consent For Minors Seeking An Abortion

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What do pro-abortion groups want Massachusetts to do in the next legislative session?

They want Massachusetts to eliminate parental consent for minors seeking an abortion. Massachusetts requires minors 15 and younger to have the consent of at least one parent or guardian to obtain an abortion, unless they get permission from a judge. 

The Beyond ROE Coalition, which consists of three pro-abortion organizations, hopes to weaken abortion restrictions in Massachusetts even further in the coming years. The three organizations leading the organization include:  Reproductive Equity Now (formerly NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts), the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, and the Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts. 

Part of the Beyond ROE Coalition’s agenda is abolishing the remaining parental consent law in the Commonwealth.

“The ROE Act removed a major parental consent barrier for 16- and 17-year-olds seeking abortion care,” the Beyond ROE Coalition’s web site says. “But there’s more work to do:  We must pass legislation to improve access to abortion care for all young people. Every person — regardless of age — must be able to access the timely reproductive health care they need without interference or delays from parental consent or judicial bypass.”

As the Beyond ROE Coalition points out, the ROE Act, an abortion bill passed by the state legislature in December 2020, eliminated parental consent for 16- and 17-year-old girls seeking an abortion in the Commonwealth.

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, a Republican who supports legal abortion, vetoed the provision of the ROE Act that would have abolished parental consent for minors seeking an abortion.

However, Governor-elect Maura Healey, a Democrat, supported the ROE Act. She endorsed the original version of the ROE Act, which would have eliminated parental consent for minors under 16 years old.

Healey explained her support for abolishing parental consent for minors seeking an abortion in a letter testifying in favor of the bill to the Massachusetts Legislature’s Joint Committee on the Judiciary on June 17, 2019. 

“This bill will also protect the health, safety, and privacy of young women by ensuring that our laws no longer create barriers that delay or deny access to health care – or force them to cross state lines,” Healey’s testimony reads. “Now more than ever, Massachusetts must build on the promise of Roe v. Wade with laws that reflect the best and most current science and respect the right of every woman to make private medical decisions in consultation with her doctor.”

Massachusetts Family Institute communications director Mary Ellen Siegler told NewBostonPost in an email message that removing the parental consent requirement for minors seeking an abortion would be harmful. 

“Removing parental consent for a minor seeking an abortion will not only undermine parental rights but will put young women at risk,” Siegler wrote. “Adolescents need parental guidance in making permanent decisions affecting their mental, emotional, and physical health. Parental involvement protects young women from sexual exploitation. Some of these young women are coerced into having sex. Parental consent adds a protective factor in more ways than one.”

Massachusetts Citizens for Life executive director Patricia Stewart told NewBostonPost in an email message that parental consent in medical care isn’t a controversial topic and that the pro-abortion side’s desired policy change will result in more preborn children being killed in abortions.

Here is what Stewart wrote:


The requirement of parental consent for a child’s medical or surgical care was never an issue – until children started having abortions. Currently, Massachusetts provides a judicial bypass procedure to circumvent parental involvement in the decision of a minor under the age of 16 to obtain an abortion. Common sense suggests that parents are best suited to advise and support a young teen facing the life-altering event of an unplanned pregnancy and that banning parental consent for such minor’s decision is inimical to that minor’s best interests. However, doing so does serve the abortion industry’s interest in eroding the natural bond between parent and child, which it views as an obstacle to control of pregnant teens and the abortion dollars they provide. Unashamedly, even Massachusetts’ recently expanded abortion laws – among the most liberal in the world – do not satisfy abortion advocates’ gluttonous appetite for death of the unborn.


Spokesmen for Reproductive Equity Now, Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts, and ACLU Massachusetts could not be reached for comment on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, or Monday.


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