Morning-after Pill Decision Detrimental to Well-being of Young Girls
April 5, 2013
Today, a federal judge in New York ruled that the federal Food and Drug Administration must make the morning-after pill, also called Plan B or emergency contraception, available to all girls without a prescription. Indiana Right to Life released the following statement:
“Indiana Right to Life strongly disagrees with today’s ruling expanding the availability of the morning-after pill to all girls,” said Sue Swayze, Legislative Director for Indiana Right to Life. “The morning-after pill isn’t like taking an aspirin. It disrupts the user’s normal cycle and the medical community has not fully studied its effects on young girls. In fact, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius opposed lifting age restrictions in 2011 because of a lack of studies on young girls.
“Distributing the morning-after pill without a prescription attempts to signal that there are no repercussions of the morning-after pill on the health and well-being of a young girl. A prescription requirement provides a medical exam and medical counsel for young girls. Should sexually transmitted diseases be found in a medical exam, treatment can begin immediately.
“We believe a prescription requirement for girls under the age of 17 provides critical oversight. In the state of Indiana, sexual activity by anyone under the age of 14 is considered sexual assault and must be reported to child protective services. We are very concerned that if today’s ruling stands, child abuse may go unreported and unnoticed. The current prescription requirement helps provide a mechanism for oversight if a young girl is being abused or coerced into sexual activity.
“The morning-after pill also can end a human life in early stages of development by keeping a fertilized egg from implanting. Human life is defined as starting at fertilization according to Indiana law. We have serious concerns with girls taking the morning-after pill without proper informed consent to understand how it works as an abortifacient.
“We urge the Obama administration to uphold their opposition to making the morning-after pill available for all ages. The administration should appeal today’s ruling because there are simply too many risks to making the morning-after pill available without a prescription.”
Indiana Right to Life’s mission is to protect the right to life, especially of unborn children, through positive education, compassionate advocacy and promotion of healthy alternatives to abortion.
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