Involuntary sterilization in 2009: It seems nearly impossible to even conceive that such a thing could still be happening. Yet it is; with regularity; and with state approval. But we have a good chance to end it in Illinois. Sign the petition here: http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/hb2290/.
Here is background information from F.R.I.D.A.
In Illinois, the Probate Act of 1975 outlines the general duties for guardianship of an adult with a disability (i.e., a ward). However, currently there are no guidelines for when a guardian seeks to have the ward sterilized. As a result, the involuntary sterilization of people with disabilities can be abused. It is possible for a guardian to violate a person’s basic right to not be sterilized without knowledge and/or consent. Most states in the U.S. have due process protections to prevent this extreme, irreversible and dehumanizing situation… but unfortunately Illinois is still one of 16 states lacking any protections against sterilization without consent.
We need to let Illinois legislators know that we want to end involuntary sterilization now by pushing the passage of H.B. 2290!
H.B. 2290 updates the Probate Act of 1975 by adding guidelines requiring that the guardian must file a motion to request the court’s authority to consent to the sterilization procedure (except when a procedure is necessary to save the ward’s life or to prevent harm to the ward); and other due process protections to prevent the involuntary sterilization of a ward without the ward's knowledge or consent. For example, the amendment requires that there be a determination of the ward's capacity to consent, and that the decision of the ward be respected.
Many parents of adult children with disabilities are not the legal guardians of their children (although they may think that they are), and have NO legal authority to seek the sterilization of their adult children. However, physicians unaware of this fact may agree to do a sterilization based on the parent’s consent, without realizing that doing so is illegal.
Sign this petition to show your support of H.B. 2290 and the end to the involuntary sterilization of people with disabilities in Illinois!