Investigative

Colorado clinic offering Plan B to 12-year-olds without parental consent

mother-daughter

A year-long investigation in Colorado uncovered shocking information. Colorado state law allows children to have access to “reproductive health services” without needing their parents’ knowledge or consent first. And at these “BC4U” – Birth Control 4 You – clinics, funded by taxpayers, children as young as 12 are able to get birth control pills, IUDs, and even Plan B.

Children’s Hospital Colorado said it’s very sensitive around the issue of confidentiality and ultimately their greatest concern is the safety of young people. The hospital also said generally 13 year olds come to the clinic with their mother or family member. When a child does come alone, Children’s Hospital Colorado said they spend a lot of time talking about the purpose of their visit. They also ask the child if the parents know they are there and if the parent is not aware, they discuss what it would be like to talk with their parent or guardian about the visit.

If the child went to the pediatrician’s office without telling her parents, the pediatrician would not be able to disclose the reason for the visit, or even call and notify the parents. But parents would still receive a bill, letting them know that their child had seen a doctor without them knowing it. These clinics offer an easy way to get around that possibility, and they’re funded by taxpayer dollars and federal grants.

In addition to giving children birth control without parental consent, the clinics are also exposing children to graphic sexual content:

When we clicked on the lifestyle tab, we found a post that read “before you hit that, see us first.” That was next to a photo of two half-naked teens. We also found a slide show for 64 sexual positions. Additionally, when we clicked on the link to their Pinterest page we found boards entitled “Be 4 u bump uglies” and “be 4 u knock boots.” Further clicking took us to an article entitled “8 ways to practice safe sexting.”

Those pages have since been removed after the local journalists who conducted the investigation into these clinics began asking how, exactly, giving children slideshows of 64 sexual positions encourages them to engage in safe sexual behavior. In fact, it would seem as if the clinic was encouraging children to engage in reckless sexual behavior.

Unsurprisingly, if a child has any kind of complication after receiving birth control or Plan B from the clinic, things get complicated…because in Colorado, a doctor must have parental consent before treating a child. Adverse reactions would be dealt with on a “case by case” basis, so theoretically, a child could have a stroke without her parents ever even knowing it happened.

The blatant hypocrisy in Colorado law is, frankly, stunning. Children must have parental consent in order to be seen and treated by any doctor, but the exception is reproductive services: birth control and abortion. But both of these have risks like any other medical procedure. Teenagers also are literally incapable of weighing the risks and benefits of, say, getting an IUD implanted or choosing to have an abortion, because the area of the brain that controls reasoning and long-term thinking has not yet been fully developed in teenagers. It’s why so many teens engage in reckless, high-risk behavior. They can’t understand the potential consequences of their actions.

A 14-year-old couldn’t choose to get a tattoo, have a boob job, or even whiten her teeth without parental consent. So why is it that birth control and abortion should be the exception?

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