Minors must understand physical, emotional risks under new abortion law

Ohio's minor abortion law requires judges to ask women personal questions about their decision. / flequi (Flickr)

The Ohio Senate has approved a bill that contains new requirements before a minor can be allowed to have an abortion without her parents agreeing to it.

Under the bill, a judge considering whether to let a girl bypass the state's parental consent requirement would have to ask if she understands the physical and emotional impacts of having an abortion. The judge also must ask the girl if she was coached on how to answer such questions.

"A bypass should not merely be a rubber stamp of the abortion industry," Sen. Keith Faber said on the Senate floor.

The Senate passed the measure Tuesday on a 23-8 vote.

The House has passed the bill, but must OK the Senate's changes before the measure goes to the governor.

Supporters say the legislation is needed to rein in judges who frequently give approval, though opponents contend it's about trying to score political points.

"It's designed to make the process more intimidating, more difficult," said Kellie Copeland, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio, to The Plain Dealer. "This is just legislation for politics. It's not improving women's health whatsoever."

Do you think the new requirements are fair for minors, or does it limit women's reproductive rights? Sound off below.