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State Abortion Restrictions and Child Fatal‐Injury: An Exploratory Study

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  • Bisakha Sen

Abstract

This paper tests the hypothesis that state‐level restrictions on abortion access are linked to increases in child fatal‐injury rates. The rationale is that such restrictions may disproportionately increase births of “unwanted” children as well as births to young, single, and low socioeconomic‐status mothers, which in turn may lead to more adverse child outcomes—including more child fatal injury deaths. The paper uses state‐level data on child fatal injuries in the 0‐4 age group for 1981‐2002, and estimates count‐data models with state and year effects separately for white and black children. The abortion restrictions considered are enforced parental consent and notification laws, no public funding, and mandatory delays. Many of the restrictions are found to be significantly associated with increased homicide‐resultant fatal injuries for white and black children, and increased unintentional fatal injuries for white children. Results for unintentional fatal injuries for black children are mixed.

Suggested Citation

  • Bisakha Sen, 2007. "State Abortion Restrictions and Child Fatal‐Injury: An Exploratory Study," Southern Economic Journal, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 73(3), pages 553-574, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:soecon:v:73:y:2007:i:3:p:553-574
    DOI: 10.1002/j.2325-8012.2007.tb00789.x
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