ATLANTA -- A federal judge yesterday enjoined Georgia from enforcing a new law requiring minors to notify their parents before having abortions, ruling that two key provisions are unconstitutional.
Last week, a panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a 1981 Minnesota law requiring minors to notify their parents or obtain court permission. An appeal is planned.
U.S. District Court Judge Robert Hall left the door open for Georgia officials to amend the two provisions and stayed further proceedings in the case until the U.S. Supreme Court rules in a similar case from Illinois.
Hall ruled said the provision that requires a parent or adult to accompany a woman 17 or younger to an abortion clinic to verify consent "unduly burdens the minor's rights." He said the Georgia General Assembly can amend it to allow verification by telephone or mail, as allowed in other states.
He also found an unconstitutional violation of a juvenile's right to anonymity. The law allows a judge to approve a minor's abortion as an alternative to parental notification in some cases, but Hall noted that Georgia does not seal juvenile court documents.
In Michigan, the state Supreme Court agreed, 6 to 0, to decide when a law ending state-paid abortions for poor women should take effect.