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Abraham’s Law: An Idea Whose Time Has Come

by @ 12:00 pm on January 10, 2007. Filed under Individual Liberty

Abraham Cherrix, the Virginia teen who was at the center of a controversy over forced medical treatment last summer, is in Richmond lobbying the General Assembly to pass a law the would prevent another child from being put through his ordeal:

If the bill that carries his name can help people, then Starchild Abraham Cherrix feels he made a difference.

“Out of all the turmoil that my family has been through, and all that I’ve been through, then if this is what comes out of it, then I’ve achieved a great thing and I’ve achieved my goal,” the 16-year-old told reporters yesterday. “I hope in the future this law can help other people and help families not go through what I went through.”

The Chincoteague teen came to the Patrick Henry Building in Richmond with his lawyers, a family spokeswoman and Del. John J. Welch III, R-Virginia Beach, who filed what he’s calling “Abraham’s Law.”

The bill stems from the Cherrix family’s fight with local officials over Abraham’s treatment for Hodgkin’s disease, a cancer of the lymphatic system.

In its details, the bill would essentially guarantee that parents, not judges, would control their children’s medical treatment:

The bill would strengthen the rights of parents whose children face life-threatening illnesses as they decide treatment. It would specify that parents who refuse a particular medical treatment for their child under 18 would not face charges of neglect if:

  • the decision was made jointly by the parents and the child;
  • the child “is sufficiently mature to have an informed opinion” on the treatment;
  • the parents and child have considered alternative treatment options; and
  • the parents and child believe “in good faith that such decision is in the child’s best interest.”

    Hopefully, Virginia legislators will for what’s right for once.

    Cross-Posted at The Liberty Papers

    Previous Posts:

    The Nanny State vs. The Family
    Judge Holds Teen With Cancer In Limbo
    The Nanny State vs. The Family Part II
    It?s D-Day For Abraham Cherrix
    Abraham Cherrix Gets A Reprieve
    The Nanny State vs. The Family Part III
    Abraham Cherrix Wins His Case
    Preventing Another Abraham Cherrix
    Abraham Cherrix Update

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