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Illinois Abortion Law is Dangerous for Youth, Repeal Parental Notice of Abortion Act | Human Right Watch

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(Chicago, March 11, 2021) – An Illinois law that requires a young person seeking an abortion to involve an adult family member is dangerous for youth in the state, violates their human rights, and threatens their health and safety, Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Illinois said in a report released today. The Illinois General Assembly should repeal the law, the Illinois Parental Notice of Abortion Act, as a matter of urgency according to the report.

Under the Parental Notice of Abortion Act (PNA), a doctor providing care to a young person under age 18 seeking an abortion in Illinois must notify a designated adult family member – a parent, grandparent, step-parent living in the home, or legal guardian – at least 48 hours beforehand. If there is a reason that the young person is not able to have one of these family members notified, the young person can go to court and ask a judge for permission to have the procedure without this forced family involvement, in a process known as “judicial bypass.”


“‘The Only People It Really Affects Are the People It Hurts’: The Human Rights Impacts of Parental Notice of Abortion in Illinois” is available at:

To read an interview on the potentially dangerous consequences of this law, please visit:

For more Human Rights Watch reporting on abortion, please visit:

For more Human Rights Watch reporting on sexual and reproductive health and rights, please visit:

For more ACLU of Illinois reporting on women’s and reproductive rights, please visit:

Thumbnail illustration: © 2021 Brian Stauffer for Human Rights Watch

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