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Politics and Issues

Vote No on Proposition 4

Maintain open access to family planning services
October 2008

By Paul Mason, Deputy Director, Sierra Club California

For the third time in four years, Californians face a proposed constitutional amendment that would create new notification requirements for women under 18 who are seeking an abortion.

Sierra Club opposes Proposition 4. For nearly 40 years, the Club has supported open access to family planning services, and Prop 4 creates a new obstacle to access. Prop 4 would require women under 18 to wait 48 hours before obtaining an abortion and would require notification of parents or grandparents or permission from the court, before proceeding.

This initiative attempts to create better family communication through a constitutional amendment. While legislating better communication is unlikely to succeed, it is likely that young women caught in abusive family situations will be put in an impossible situation and will end up pursuing black-market abortions.

Prop 4 is likely to end up sending young women to seek dangerous amateur abortions, which is why organizations such as the California Medical Association and California Nurses Association oppose the proposal. For more information visit