Federal Judge Rules Morning After Pill Must Be Available Without Prescription To Underage Girls

A federal judge has ruled it “unreasonable” to treat birth control any differently than aspirin for underage girls. Judge Edward R. Korman, a federal judge for the Eastern District of New York, ruled today it is “arbitrary, capricious, and unreasonable,” to deny girls under age 17 access to the morning-after contraception pill without a prescription. Writing, ”The standards are the same for aspirin and for contraceptives,” Korman declared those holding the opposite opinion to be against science.

Even President Obama’s Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has argued, “It is common knowledge that there are significant cognitive and behavioral differences between older adolescent girls and the youngest girls of reproductive age.” Sebelius overruled the FDA’s decision in 2011 to permit the drugs for girls under age 17 without prescription.  President Obama publicly backed his HHS Secretary on that decisions, calling it “common sense” and what “most parents” would want.

For Korman, a Reagan appointee, development and parental concerns are just “politics.” 11-year-old girls are in such need for over-the-counter contraception, Korman called it “intolerable” for the FDA to delay more than 30 more days in granting them access. Crucial to his reasoning, Korman asserted the number of 11-year-olds to access this drug “is likely to be minuscule”. Still, Korman pronounced justice is aggrieved by this minuscule number of 11-year-old being ”forced to endure” delay in access to non-prescription contraception.

Pro-abortion groups nationwide are hailing Korman’s decisions. Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, gushed “Women all over the country will no longer face arbitrary delays and barriers just to get emergency contraception,” notably omitting any mention of minor girls.

The Obama Administration has not yet commented on whether it will appeal Korman’s ruling.

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