Teens under 16 still could seek a protection order but would have to do it with parental consent."Based on my personal experience, we, as a whole, cannot be protected from our abusers," Ridge View student Chris Kane said."Abusers can freely stalk us, harass us at school and jobs."Lawmakers in a Senate subcommittee postponed voting on the bill, citing concerns with increasing penalties for teens committing dating violence. Teen Dating Violence is a pattern of emotional, verbal, sexual, or physical abuse used by one person in a current or past dating relationship to exert power and control over another when one or both of the partners is a teenager.
The teens testified that fractured relationships with parents often keep students from confiding in the adults about what's going on with their boyfriends or girlfriends, such as whether abusive patterns are emerging or getting worse.Under provisions of the bill, a court would be able to issue a protection order to someone who is 16 or 17, but would be under a 24-hour window to notify a parent or guardian.One concern is the bill would align youths with the punishment levels for adults convicted of domestic violence.According to the bill, teens convicted would be guilty of a felony and serve a maximum of 10 years consecutive to any other charge.COLUMBIA — Lawmakers are considering allowing teenagers as young as 16 to get court orders of protection — without parental consent — when they are victims of domestic violence.
A proposed bill would also require teen-dating violence education in public schools and would increase penalties for those convicted of associated crimes.Frazier, D-Discovery Bay, said the bill would teach students about healthy teen dating.“Researchers have found that nearly a quarter of all girls and women who have ever been raped, attacked or stalked by an intimate partner – and 14 percent of men and boys in that situation – first experienced some form of dating violence between the ages of 11 and 17,” Frazier said in a statement.Despite this shocking prevalence of abuse and its proven negative impact on healthy development and education, Pennsylvania law does not require schools to address dating abuse.Mary Kay and its independent sales force, representatives from the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape and Break the Cycle are teaming up to ensure Pennsylvania youth get the help they need to build healthy relationships.It is essential that students are educated on healthy relationships, warning signs and resources prior to getting involved in an abusive relationship." The bill has bipartisan support with eight cosponsors, six Democrats and two Republicans.