Category Archives: Pregnancy care centers

Pro-choicer on CA law: Don’t make pregnancy centers refer for abortion

nolanbrownby Kelli

To be clear, some crisis pregnancy centers can be shady. They have been known to misleadingly portray themselves as full-service women’s health clinics, or to obscure religious affiliations. They may offer discredited info on things like “the link between abortion and depression,” or engage in what some describe as bullying or pressuring women into carrying pregnancies to term.

But the state really shouldn’t be in the business of deciding what completely non-criminal information a private operation may make available. And many businesses and non-profits have owners with religious beliefs that they don’t necessarily broadcast. In other words, you may condemn these pregnancy centers’ tactics or views, but they’re not de facto doing anything illegal. What’s more, they may doing some good: Despite not offering contraception or abortion advice, the centers do offer things like free pregnancy tests, screenings for sexually transmitted infections, ultrasounds, and baby clothes.

If particular centers are engaging in deceptive or fraudulent practices, then by all means, go after them for that. But the point should be making them be honest about what they are, not trying to turn them into something they’re not.

~ Pro-choicer Elizabeth Nolan Brown (pictured), voicing her objections to California’s Reproductive FACT Act, which “would require pregnancy centers to post notices saying that reproductive health services, including abortion, are available to pregnant women in the state,” Reason.com, May 27

[Photo via reason.com]

California goes after pregnancy resource centers

Amy_Everittby Carder

I find it extremely difficult to understand how people who claim to care about women find it so threatening to inform them about accessing affordable health care….

We can all agree that women deserve to have all the information in front of them when they make some of the most important decisions they will ever face.

~ Amy Everitt, the state director of NARAL Pro-Choice California, discussing California’s Reproductive FACT Act, which “would specifically crack down on unlicensed ‘crisis pregnancy centers’ (CPCs) that present misleading health information designed to dissuade women from choosing abortion,” as quoted by Think Progress, May 22

[Photo via sacbee.com]

NARAL lied: No “deceptive” pregnancy center ads pulled by Google

NARAL - Thank You Google On April 28 NARAL made a media splash by claiming it had gotten Google to remove a large number of “deceptive ads from anti-choice crisis pregnancy centers.”

And those “deceptions,” if true, were major whoppers.

From the Washington Post:

According to an analysis by NARAL, 79 percent of the crisis pregnancy centers that advertised on Google indicated that they provided medical services such as abortions, when, in fact, they are focused on counseling services and on providing information about alternatives to abortion….

Google said in a statement that it had applied its ad policy standards in this case and followed normal company procedures.

That’s a lot of pregnancy care centers supposedly posing as abortion clinics. The sheer magnitude should have raised a red flag with any objective journalist who bore in mind s/he had been fed those statistics by the opposition. I am aware of NO pcc that would do such a thing.

NARAL claimed:

We discovered that if you Googled “abortion clinic,” ads funded by anti-choice crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) appeared 79 percent of the time. CPCs don’t provide or refer for abortion care, and they shouldn’t trick women into thinking that they do. 

NARAL further claimed:

[M]ore than two-thirds of the ads we identified have been removed or taken down. The ads in question violate several of the company’s advertising practices by misrepresenting the services the centers provide….

Pro-lifers were immediately alarmed by NARAL’s witch hunt and Google’s apparent capitulation.

But now that the dust has settled, it is clear NARAL fabricated this storyline.

All major national pregnancy care center organizations have confirmed to myself or fellow pro-life journalists that not one of their prc ads has been pulled from Google. These groups cover the gamut and include CareNet, CompassCare, Heartbeat International, Heroic Media, National Institute of Family and Life Advocates, Online for Life, and Vitae Foundation.

NARAL cited an ad by pregnanthelp.com as an example of the “deception”:

2014-05-05_1334

PregnantHelp.com is a CareNet affiliate. Today, Melinda Gipson, CareNet’s Vice President of Marketing and Communications, responded via email:

What NARAL objected to was the fact that this ad appeared when someone searched, “Abortion clinic Naperville, IL.” Yet the center never bought the search term “abortion clinic.” Instead, it is more likely that Google’s AdWords’ real-time bidding engine saw the word “abortion” and “Naperville” in its queue, weighed this against the text in the ad and the price the center was bidding for exposure, then deemed the ad appropriate.

If anything, Google was itself probably responsible for the juxtaposition of this search string and the Naperville ad, and the fact that the ad was not in fact removed, nor was Naperville identified of a violation, shows that Google agrees.

So it may be Google itself that is responsible for the ad words glitch, which would explain its ambiguous response to queries on this matter.

Gipson explained more about how Google places ads in a follow-up email, which I found quite helpful. Gipson is a Google ad word expert, having had 20 years of experience in online media and marketing before joining CareNet.

Indeed, when I googled “abortion clinic Naperville il” today, PregnantHelp.com’s ad appeared first, with another pro-life organization (freeabortionhelp.com) third:

google

When I googled “abortion clinic,” a pro-life ad came up second. For “abortion clinics,” two pro-life ads were among those listed on the right side.

SearchEngineLand.com concurred with my findings:

Do Google’s actions mark a policy change on abortion related advertising? Is this an indication the company is taking a political stance on the issue? Are all ads from pregnancy centers banned on Google? Did NARAL tread new ground in “lobbying” Google to remove ads it found misleading?

The answer to all of these questions is, No….

A clinic that does not offer abortion services can still buy and advertise on “crisis pregnancy center” and “abortion clinic” related keywords. The advertisers can promote the abortion alternative services, adoption or pre-natal care they offer, for example.

Bottom line, NARAL fabricated the Google storyline, and the mainstream media willingly or ignorantly fell for it.

NARAL got what it wanted in the short term – free media to tarnish the brand of pregnancy care centers, plus an accomplishment to show its donors other than its president, Ilyse Hogue, going on The Daily Show to discuss penis pumps.

But NARAL also revealed the desperation of an industry that is bleeding its only source of income, abortion, to the pro-life movement, and the industry obviously and rightfully deems pregnancy care centers to be major culprits.

But NARAL better be careful what it wishes for. A Google search today of “crisis pregnancy center” turned up an ad for none other than Planned Parenthood

2014-05-05_1829

And as Tom Glessner of NIFLA pointed out at NationalRightToLifeNews.org:

Interestingly, if you do a search of “Abortion alternatives, city, state,” who do you think shows up in the paid advertising? Go ahead try it! The top three listing will most likely be abortion providers. Talk about deceptive and misleading advertising! Let’s tell Google about that!

Indeed. Perhaps MSM will be interested in doing a follow-up corrective story exposing the real deceivers – not.

[HT for “crisis pregnancy center”/PP ad: LifeSiteNews.com]

Brrr! Polar Plunge raises funds for pregnancy center

winterplunge-logo-300-x-265by Lead moderator Carla

This Saturday, February 22, I will be doing a Winter Plunge to raise money for the Lakes Life Care Center in Forest Lake, Minnesota. This is different for me. Years ago, I ran a triathlon to raise money for another pregnancy center – and I realized that I am really not good at triathlons. But maybe I can handle freezing for a good cause. Jump in. Jump out!

I was asked by the director of this pregnancy resource center, Jill Wagner, to join her team. Jill is an old friend of mine. Actually, she’s the friend who tried to help me by driving me to my abortion appointment 23 years ago. As my roommate, she witnessed my desperation and my fear and offered me a ride to the abortion mill and spent her entire day there waiting for me. And that changed her. That is her story. She is now passionately pro-life and saves the lives of mommies and their babies from abortion every single day.

Would you please consider donating to this extremely worthy cause? My fundraising goal is $500. I am almost there!

If you’re not familiar with what a Winter Plunge is, watch this:

YouTube Preview Image

BRRRR!! Again, click here to donate! Thank you!

NARAL: It’s a “threat” to give free stuff to pregnant moms in need

[I]f the case were about transparency, then the City Council — and state legislators — should get busy passing legislation requiring abortion clinics to post how many abortions they have provided, how many women have been seriously injured or died in a clinic and whether the clinic has ever lost its license.

That would be useful information, because abortion is a serious medical procedure that should be performed by qualified medical professionals. And quality care is not always the norm in Maryland….

I do not expect legislators to force abortion clinics to be open with their data, however, because the crisis pregnancy center law was never about transparency — it was about pushing an agenda.

The impetus for it was a series of reports by NARAL Pro-Choice America, including one on Maryland, alleging crisis pregnancy centers were a “growing threat to women’s health.” Their crime: providing free pregnancy tests, parenting classes, diapers and baby supplies….

The verdict from the reports is that not providing abortions, or counseling women against abortions, is dangerous. Thus entered the City Council to protect women from the purveyors of baby clothes and adoption advice.

[T]he City Solicitor’s Office is busy trying the Greater Baltimore Center for Pregnancy Concerns… in the court of public opinion… [and] investigating the center to show that its real goal is to make money and that it is not honest in how it describes its services….

On the front page of the center’s website, it says that it does “not perform or refer abortions.” … It receives no money from the government… [and] provides services free of charge.

It’s rolling in so much money, the Archdiocese of Baltimore recently sent out a request in church bulletins on its behalf: “Please consider picking up an extra pack of diapers, wipes, and baby toiletries on your next trip to Target, Walmart or the grocery store.”

I’m glad the city knows a suspect operation when it sees one.

~ Marta H. Mossburg, remarking on attempts to force pregnancy resource centers in Baltimore to post signs stating what services they do not offer, The Baltimore Sun, July 16

[Pictured above is Lindsay Rupprecht, coordinator of the Greater Baltimore Center for Pregnancy Concerns, via The Dialog]

Ambitious expansion of urban crisis pregnancy outreach underway

slattery-courtFor 28 years Chris Slattery (pictured right), founder of Expectant Mother Care Frontline Pregnancy Centers, has focused on helping pregnant mothers in crisis in the New York City area, where 40% of all babies are killed by abortion, and worse, 60% of all black babies.

EMC now operates in 12 locations in four NYC boroughs.

But this summer Slattery plans to exponentially expand EMC’s urban outreach to 10 other major U.S. cities with high abortion rates and underrepresented crisis pregnancy outreach – Austin, Baltimore, Buffalo, Charlotte, Cleveland, Detroit, Miami, Philadelphia, San Antonio, and Washington, D.C.

EMC offices are already open in Charlotte, Detroit, and DC. EMC’s Miami branch will launch next week.

IMG_1804Slattery plans to accomplish this ambitious expansion through innovative use of flexible workplace rental space and high caliber college and grad school interns.

Slattery is affordably locating in typically high rent districts by renting day offices, which come complete with furniture and receptionists. Pictured left is EMC’s Detroit suite.

“A typical city has half a dozen of these sorts of offices in a central part of the city or suburbs,” Slattery explained to me a phone interview. “We will make use of these efficient and attractive offices two to five days per week depending on the market.”

These urban prcs will be marketed primarily on the Internet and through referral from suburban and rural prcs.

IMG_5573Slattery will staff his prcs with college and graduate school interns, most from outside the U.S. Forty have been recruited thus far, 90% from Spain. Pictured right is intern Betty Cona, already staffing the Charlotte office.

“All of these young people have had experience serving the poor around the world,” Chris explained. “On average these kids have completed two to three summers of service to the poor. They are all aged 20 to 28 and are fluent in multiple languages, particularly Spanish.”

Slattery’s secondary goal is to bolster Hispanic outreach, which is lacking in our movement.

The interns will receive three to four weeks of training in New York before teams of four are sent to various cities. There they will receive free housing and be connected with American counterparts, local female college and grad students who it is hoped will expand this effort into year-round operation of the prcs. In most markets there will also be seasoned, older pro-life women also working with them side-by-side.

A 45-hour work week will be equally divided between sidewalk counseling in front of urban abortion clinics and peer-to-peer counseling and education in the office. On any given day two interns will stand in front of an abortion clinic while two staff the office.

abortion_doc_296“We will be at Santangelo’s clinic all summer, for instance,” Chris said, referring to the late-term D.C. abortionist recently exposed by Live Action as conducive to infanticide.

Interns will receive $110 stipend per week.

Slattery says they still need housing and local talent. He is also open to expanding to other cities if he can find solid partners. “I’m not looking at small towns,” Chris reiterated. “Large cities are our underserved market.”

Slattery can establish a new urban market for $2,000-$3,000 a month, which covers office space, intern stipends, and advertising.

Stage II will be to partner with pro-life ob/gyns and clinics. In NYC, eight of these partner with EMC.

If you live in one of these locations, and can provide housing or financial aid, email Chris at slatteryny@gmail.com.

Breaking: Justin Bieber’s mom to promote life-affirming film, “Crescendo”

image004UPDATE 10p: I couldn’t put this any better than did Vanessa on Facebook:

Hey BIEBER Fans!!!! Great recommendation from a woman who knows what it is to be a young pregnant single parent. It goes to show that you cant do away with a life that will change your world and can potentially change many worlds. Thank you Pattie Mallette.

Indeed! Thank you, Pattie. Here’s Pattie’s special message to pregnancy care center directors, a fundraising promo for a screening of Crescendo

YouTube Preview Image

5:49p: I wrote earlier breakingthis week that the inspirational short film, Crescendo, would have a VVIP (very, very important person) take a lead in promoting the film.

Movie To Movement has just announced that person is Pattie Mallette, singer Justin Bieber’s mother.

Mallette has agreed to take on the role of executive producer of Crescendo.

4750w800In that capacity Mallette will promote Crescendo in Movie To Movement’s initiative to raise $10 million for pregnancy care centers  this year by hosting 1,000 screenings across the globe. (The initial goal I reported of $1 mil via 100 screenings is for opening night, February 28.)

Mallette has videotaped a message to be shown at prc screenings.

Very shortly MTM will release a teaser video, which I will put up post haste.

From the press statement:

“My hope through this involvement is to encourage young women all over the world, just like me, to let them know that there is a place to go, people who will take care of you and a safe home to live in if you are pregnant and think you have nowhere else to turn,” says Mallette.

Mallette, also known as Justin Bieber’s mom, has been vocal about the trauma, abuse and addiction that marked her early childhood and adult years. In her debut memoir Nowhere But Up (Revell), she tells the amazing story of the help she received from a pregnancy center, when she found herself scared and unprepared as a young teenager, while pregnant with Justin.  The pregnancy center who cared for her gave her life skills, hope, help and love, which she says literally “saved their lives.”  Mallette will share her personal story at screenings worldwide, to help support the work of similar centers around the world.

Beginning February 28, Movie to Movement will launch the initiative to raise $10 million for pregnancy centers nationwide by hosting 1,000 screenings across the globe. Nearly 100 pregnancy centers have currently made the pledge to support the film opening weekend.  Key markets screening the film include Dallas, Texas, Los Angeles, Calif., St. Louis, Mo., Chicago, Ill., and Columbus, Ohio.   The film is also slated to be screened in Ireland and across Europe for thousands of attendees.

To learn more about scheduling a screening of Crescendo, go to cpcmovie.com.

K of C, pregnancy center team up to bring families Thanksgiving

For the fifth year in a row, the Knights of Columbus, a fraternal organization of Catholic men, delivered laundry baskets filled to the brim with pie, green beans, dinner rolls, frozen turkeys and pans, to the 75 families in the Colorado Springs Pregnancy Center’s LifeSteps Program.

The program provides education, support, and practical assistance for parents and future parents, from the time of pregnancy, until their child turns 2. The turkey baskets are just one way the program aims to help families prosper….

“We got 90 percent of what we needed for him through them,” said Valerie Vance, who held her 8-month-old son, Ayden, on her hip. “When I found out I was pregnant, it was not a good situation…. We didn’t have anything,” she said. Without the help of the program, Vance said she would “probably still be in tears….”

While the center primarily reaches out to teen and first-time mothers, the LifeSteps program has expanded to help mothers of all ages. Fathers-to-be are also encouraged come, even if they’re not involved with the mother.

Valerie Pond came to the program when she was 4 months pregnant. She’d heard that it provided maternity clothes.

“In addition to finding out I was pregnant, I had lost my job,” said Pond as she picked up a basket with her son, 16-month old Malachi.

Pond said the turkey baskets are just another amazing thing the program has provided.

~ Lisa Walton, The Gazette, November 17