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Consent to sterilization refers to taking a decision to undergo sterilization after being informed about the nature and consequences of sterilization. Consent must be given after understanding fully about the process of sterilization. This requirement is for the benefit of persons with disabilities who are able to engage in sexual activities but are unable to give voluntary consent for procreation or sterilization. Provision for consent of sterilization is made so that no person shall be sterilized only by reason of a developmental disability. It also ensures that no individual who consciously opposes sterilization is sterilized involuntarily. A person with developmental disabilities must be provided with services needed to enable him/her to lead a more normal and independent life, which includes assistance and training that might prevent the need for sterilization.
The following is an example of a state statute ( California) defining consent to sterilization: According to Cal Prob Code section 1951 consent to sterilization means making a voluntary decision to undergo sterilization after being fully informed about, and after fully understanding the nature and consequences of, sterilization.