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Transcript of Teen Pregnancy
a. A school counselor is encouraged to uphold confidentiality in the state of Florida for a pregnant teen unless the pregnant teen is posing harm to self or others.
b. There is no age limit on holding confidentiality.
c. The school counselor encourages teen to inform parents.
d. If the teen is a minor (under the age of 18) and wants an abortion, a parent or legal guardian must be given notice 48 hours before the procedure in the state of Florida. The parent or legal guardian does not have to give consent. The doctor or judge sends notification to parent or legal guardian if the teen does not inform the parent or legal guardian herself.
e. A counselor must remember that with a confidential, therapeutic relationship, the counselor can help the pregnant teen navigate through making healthy choices such as sexual activity, self respect, self worth, and goal setting for life after graduation.
a. Emancipation – The act of a minor gaining the rights of an adult. The parents no longer have to support the minor. An emancipated minor can “act as an adult.” This does not mean to “divorce” parents.
b. A minor 16 years of age or older can seek emancipation by filing a request to a judge with the help of a lawyer.
c. The parents will be notified, and a hearing will be scheduled with a judge.
d. The minor must demonstrate means to support themselves (e.g. rent, utilities, food, clothing, medical care, transportation, insurance, staples, school fees and supplies, etc). The request can be denied if the minor’s evidence does not prove emancipation is in the best interest. Therefore, parents maintain their rights to their minor.
e. Automatic emancipation: marriage after the age of 16, joining armed forces, and filing a request to the judge and receiving approval
f. A minor cannot get married before the age of 16 even with parental consent.
g. If the minor is emancipated, the minor loses DCF protection.
PREGNANCY DOES NOT EMANCIPATE A MINOR!
i. Pregnancy allows the minor to have medical emancipation (minor makes medical decisions for self and child).
j. Once the minor gives birth, the minor can no longer continue to make medical decisions for self, only for the child until they are of age to request emancipation or turn 18.
Chronological Vs. Developmental Age
a. If a pregnant teen considers an abortion, and deems it too dangerous to tell her parents for intent of notice, the teen can seek a judicial bypass and file a request before the judge with assistance from a lawyer.
b. The judge will consider the minor’s:
b. Overall intelligence.
c. Emotional development and stability.
d. Credibility and demeanor as a witness.
e. Ability to accept responsibility.
f. Ability to assess both the immediate and long-range consequences of the minor’s choices.
g. Ability to understand and explain the medical risks of terminating her pregnancy and to apply that understanding to her decision.
h. Whether there may be any undue influence by another on the minor’s decision to have an abortion.
c. Parental notice is waived if a medical emergency is present, the minor is married, a judicial bypass has been approved, or the minor has been emancipated.
• CDC parents portal
- Handling parenting challenges (videos, interactive activities)
- Office of Adolescent Health: talking with teens
- American Academy of Pediatrics: teen dating and sex
- The National Day to Prevent Teen Pregnancy
35,610 girls between the ages of 15- 19 were pregnant in Florida 2010( Guttmacher, 2010)
Florida was ranked number 19 among the 50 states in state rankings in rates of pregnancy (Guttmacher, 2010)
The pregnancy rate among teenagers was 57.4 pregnancies per 1,000 women; this means that about 6% of teens became pregnant in 2010.
In 2013 273,105 babies were born to women aged 15-19. (CDC, 2013)
* a record low for U.S
According to a 2013 youth risk behavior survey; (CDC, 2013)
- 13 % did not use any method of birth control to prevent pregnancy during the last time they had sexual intercourse
- 38 % did not use a condom during their last sexual encounter.
**In Florida minors have access to contraceptive services without parents consent , if they are married, or if they are pregnant or have ever been pregnant, or if a phiscian deems it necessary for health purposes.
Ethical Issues Related to teen Pregnancy
Implications for school counselors
First and foremost counselors must put the student first.
Counselors must stay abreast on there current state laws and school policies involving student pregnancies
Counselors must be sure not to impose values and influence students to make a certain decision
Is Parental notification of pregnancy in Florida
necessary or not?
Name some implications for counselors involving teen pregnancy.
House Bill 633 was just signed into law on July 1 by Gov. Rick Scott.
Every women seeking an abortion has to wait 24 hours before the procedure. A women schedules an appointment with an abortion provider and will wait 24 hours before the procedure is done. This allows for a "reflective period" before making a serious decision. The law does not hinder access to getting an abortion. The law has exceptions in the case of rape, incest, domestic abuse, and human trafficking. Women have to provide the proper legal documentation such as a police report, restraining order, or a similar legal document.
To be or not to be??
Confidentiality and Parental notification
High Schools are becoming proactive
High Schools are becoming proactive
• 8 % required students to take two or more health courses
• 41.8% taught 4 contraceptive topics in a required course during grades 9-12
• 69.2% tried to increase knowledge on pregnancy prevention in a required course.
• 84% taught how to access valid and reliable info about HIV, STD”S and Pregnancy in a required course.
• 31% provided parents health information parent knowledge of HIV prevention, STD prevention, and pregnancy prevention
*Florida statute s.390.0116 - Public exemptions; minors seeking waiver of notice requirements (confidentiality)
A.1.d. School counselors are knowledgeable of laws, regulations and policies relating to students and strive to protect and inform students regarding their rights.
A.1.a. Professional school counselors have a primary obligation to the students, who are to be treated with dignity and respect as unique individuals.
**A.2.d. Recognize their primary obligation for confidentiality is to the students but balance that obligation with an understanding of parents’/guardians’ legal and inherent rights to be the guiding voice in their children’s lives, especially in value-laden issues. Understand the need to balance students’ ethical rights to make choices, their capacity to give consent or assent and parental or familial legal rights and responsibilities to protect these students and make decisions on their behalf.
**A.2.c. Recognize the complicated nature of confidentiality in schools and consider each case in context. Keep information confidential unless legal requirements demand that confidential information be revealed or a breach is required to prevent serious and foreseeable harm to the student. Serious and foreseeable harm is different for each minor in schools and is defined by students’ developmental and chronological age, the setting, parental rights and the nature of the harm. School counselors consult with appropriate professionals when in doubt as to the validity of an exception.
**A.2.e. Promote the autonomy and independence of students to the extent possible and use the most appropriate and least intrusive method of breach. The developmental age and the circumstances requiring the breach are considered and as appropriate students are engaged in a discussion about the method and timing of the breach.
B.1.a. Respect the rights and responsibilities of parents/guardians for their children and endeavor to establish, as appropriate, a collaborative relationship with parents/guardians to facilitate students’ maximum development.
Florida statute s.743.065 unwed minor or minor mother; consent to medical services for minor or minors child valid
**E.1.d. Strive through personal initiative to stay abreast of current research and to maintain professional competence in advocacy, teaming and collaboration, culturally competent counseling and school counseling program coordination, knowledge and use of technology, leadership, and equity assessment using data.
G.3. When faced with any ethical dilemma school counselors, school counseling program directors/supervisors and school counselor educators use an ethical decision-making model such as Solutions to Ethical Problems in Schools (STEPS) (Stone, 2001):
1. Define the problem emotionally and intellectually
2. Apply the ASCA Ethical Standards and the law
3. Consider the students’ chronological and developmental levels
4. Consider the setting, parental rights and minors’ rights
5. Apply the moral principles
6. Determine Your potential courses of action and their consequences
7. Evaluate the selected action
9. Implement the course of action
A.4.b. Counselors are aware of—and avoid imposing—their own values, attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors. Counselors respect the diversity of clients, train- ees, and research participants and seek training in areas in which they are at risk of imposing their values onto clients, especially when the counselor’s values are inconsistent with the client’s goals or are discriminatory in nature.
Counselors must respect the autonomy of clients
Counselors should be apart of planning committees that advocate awareness about health related issues such as safe sex and pregnancy
A.1. c. Respect students’ values, beliefs and cultural background and do not impose the school counselor’s personal values on students or their families.
A.1.e. Promote the welfare of individual students and collaborate with them to develop an action plan for success.
*Florida statute s3.01114 Parental notification of Abortion Act
What are some ways that counselor's can impose values or beliefs even without saying anything?
What does Florida Law say about minors who are seeking an abortion?
Related court cases
a. Holt vs. Bellflower Unified School District
b. Title IX (Russo vs. Diocese of Greensburg and Greensburg Central Catholic H.S. 2010)
c. Arnold vs. Board of Education Escambia County
Bittinger, A. (2006). Legal hurdles to leap to get medical treatment for children.
The Florida Bar Journal, 80(1). Retrieved from https://www.floridabar.org/DIVCOM/JN/JNJournal01.nsf/c0d731e03de9828d8525745800 42ae7a/afc19001ffae74fc852570e70055d33a!OpenDocument&Highlight=ann,bittinger
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2013, January 6). Retrieved July 9, 2015, from http://www.cdc.gov/
Herlihy, B., & Corey, G. (2015) ACA ethical standards casebook (7th ed.) Alexiandria, VA: American School Counseling Association
Guttmacher Institute. (2012)State policies in brief as of March 1, 2012; Parental involvement in minors' abortions. Retrieved from www.guttmacher.org
Legal Aid. (2015). Emancipation. Retrieved from www.legalaidocba.org/documents/Emancipation.pdf
National Partnership for Women and Families. (2015). Legal guides for pregnant and parenting minors. Retrieved from http://www.nationalpartnership.org/issues/repro/legal-guides-for- minors.html
The Florida Senate. (2015). 2014 florida statutes. Retrieved from http://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2011/Title29/#Title29
Stone, C. (2013). School counseling principles: Ethics & law (3rd ed.). Alexandria, VA: American School Counselor Association.