JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri Senate has passed a bill that would make it easier to terminate a father’s parental rights if the child was the result of rape.
The proposal, approved 31-1 on Wednesday, would allow judges to terminate a father’s parental rights if there was “clear, cogent, and convincing evidence” that he raped the mother, resulting in her pregnancy. The judge would also have to weigh whether termination would be in the child’s best interest.
Furthermore, the bill would allow a woman to collect child support from the man accused of rape, even if his rights were terminated. But the woman would remain eligible for public assistance even if she did not seek child support.
The bill now moves to the House.