For an organization which continually espouses the magnificence of “choice,” Planned Parenthood has given their affiliates no choice with regards to abortion. Planned Parenthood affiliates now have to provide abortions or else.
Planned Parenthood Federation of America is requiring all of their affiliates to provide abortions in at least one of their affiliate locations. This is part of their “new patient services initiative.” In the past, affiliates would decide for themselves whether they wanted to provide abortions or just refer women to the nearest abortionist. Planned Parenthood apparently no longer wants its clinics referring possible clients to their competition.
Planned Parenthood is already America’s leading abortion provider. In 2008, their clinics provided 324,008 abortions. That’s approximately one quarter of all abortions in the United States. The number of abortions provided by Planned Parenthood has nearly doubled in the last 11 years while the number of abortions performed nationally has decreased.
Over the same time period, the amount of tax dollars they receive has continued to rise. In the fiscal year ending June 30, 2009, Planned Parenthood received $363.2 million from government grants and contracts. Their total income surpassed $1 billion.
Planned Parenthood is often labeled the “Box-Store of Abortion” by other abortion providers because their size and resources makes it difficult for smaller abortion clinics to compete with them. An abortion clinic in Washington closed its doors in November after 31 years of killing children preparing to be born because Planned Parenthood started providing abortions in the area and there weren’t enough clients for both of them.
At this time, only a few ripples of Planned Parenthood’s new abortion policy have surfaced.
At least one affiliate has decided to disaffiliate themselves from Planned Parenthood after 52 years because they don’t want to provide abortions. Planned Parenthood of South Texas is now Family Planning of Coastal Bend. Their CEO told reporters from the Corpus Christi Caller Times, “We have never provided abortions. Our position is that if that is a need in your community, fine. There are far greater needs in our area than abortion.”
While one affiliate decided to jump ship, another has embraced the new policy. Planned Parenthood of Southwest Oregon recently began offering RU-486 chemical abortions. This led a local Catholic charity to end its partnership with the local United Way because of their relationship with the Planned Parenthood affiliate.
In Michigan, there are currently three Planned Parenthood affiliates. Two of them have provided abortions in the past while one has not. Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan has yet to indicate how they will respond to Planned Parenthood’s “new patient services initiative."
To learn more about Planned Parenthood, visit Right to Life of Michigan’s web site at www.rtl.org.