Florida Senate - 2019 SB 1778 By Senator Stargel 22-02504A-19 20191778__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to public records; creating s. 3 390.01118, F.S.; providing a public records exemption 4 for information that could identify a minor which is 5 contained in a record held by the court relating to 6 the minor’s petition to waive consent requirements to 7 obtain an abortion; providing for future legislative 8 review and repeal under the Open Government Sunset 9 Review Act; providing a statement of public necessity; 10 providing a contingent effective date. 11 12 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 13 14 Section 1. Section 390.01118, Florida Statutes, is created 15 to read: 16 390.01118 Public records exemptions; minors seeking waiver 17 of consent requirements.—Any information that can be used to 18 identify a minor who is petitioning a circuit court for a 19 judicial waiver, as provided in s. 390.01117, of the consent 20 requirements under the Parental Consent for Abortion Act is: 21 (1) Confidential and exempt from s. 24(a), Art. I of the 22 State Constitution, if held by a circuit court or an appellate 23 court. 24 (2) Confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), 25 Art. I of the State Constitution, if held by the office of 26 criminal conflict and civil regional counsel or the Justice 27 Administrative Commission. 28 29 This section is subject to the Open Government Sunset Review Act 30 in accordance with s. 119.15 and shall stand repealed on October 31 2, 2024, unless reviewed and saved from repeal through 32 reenactment by the Legislature. 33 Section 2. (1) The Legislature finds that it is a public 34 necessity to keep confidential and exempt from public disclosure 35 information contained in a court record which could be used to 36 identify a minor who is petitioning the court for a waiver from 37 the statutory requirement that a parent or legal guardian give 38 consent before the minor may obtain an abortion. The information 39 contained in these records is of a sensitive, personal nature 40 regarding a minor petitioner, release of which could harm the 41 reputation of the minor, as well as jeopardize her safety. 42 Disclosure of this information could jeopardize the safety of 43 the minor in instances when child abuse or child sexual abuse 44 against her is present by exposing her to further acts of abuse 45 from an abuser who, if the information was not held 46 confidential, could learn of her pregnancy, her plans to obtain 47 an abortion, and her petition to the court. 48 (2) The Legislature further finds that it is a public 49 necessity to keep this identifying information in records held 50 by the court confidential and exempt in order to protect the 51 privacy of the minor. The State Constitution contains an express 52 right of privacy in Section 23 of Article I. Further, the United 53 States Supreme Court has repeatedly required parental-consent 54 laws to contain judicial-bypass procedures and to preserve 55 confidentiality at every level of court proceedings in order to 56 protect the privacy rights of the minor. Without the 57 confidentiality and exemption provided in this act, the 58 disclosure of personal identifying information would violate the 59 right of privacy of the minor and would place the 60 constitutionality of the state’s program providing for a 61 judicial waiver of consent in question. Thus, the 62 confidentiality and exemption provided by this act are necessary 63 for the effective administration of the Parental Consent for 64 Abortion Act, for which administration would be impaired without 65 the exemption. 66 Section 3. This act shall take effect on the same date that 67 SB ___ or similar legislation takes effect if such legislation 68 is adopted in the same legislative session or an extension 69 thereof and becomes a law.