Thursday, February 3, 2011

SCR 1 - Honoring Crisis Pregnancy Centers

On January 26th SCR1 passed both the House and the Senate. SCR1 is a concurrent resolution intended to “honor “and protect South Dakota Crisis Pregnancy Centers (CPCs). Like most anti-choice bills and resolutions SCR1 is written in a way that the dangers are hidden within its subtlety. Among these dangers is a line in the resolution that discourages “national, state or local groups attempting to prevent pregnancy care centers from effectively serving women and men facing unplanned pregnancies.” This could greatly limit legitimate advocates from holding CPCs accountable for any further manipulation or misuse of funding.

 Many CPCs are advertised as a safe place for teens and women who are facing unplanned pregnancies where they will receive comprehensive care and balanced information about the options they have. Once a female seeks their alleged services they are given inaccurate and sensationalized information on abortion as an effort to coerce them into completing the pregnancy despite the potential ramifications on the female and their families. This kind of marketing is trickery aimed to manipulate females’ right to choose. This is a direct violation of their claims that they provide adequate services to females and families by “equipping them with complete and accurate information regarding their pregnancy options and the development of their unborn children.” The use of the term “unborn children” alone indicates the anti-choice philosophy that drives SCR1.

Misinformation being disseminated by many CPCs includes the usual go-to rhetoric utilized by the anti-choice movement such as: abortion causes depression, increases the chances of breast cancer and decreases the chances of later conception.  Although many CPCs are unlicensed organizations they make medical claims and conceal themselves as legitimate medical establishments. Females who are facing unplanned pregnancies are lured in by promises of receiving care only to have their fears taken advantage of and their perceptions manipulated. 

NARAL Pro-choice South Dakota and affiliates focus our honor on women and families not on deceptive CPCs. We are committed to assuring women receive adequate health care and education.  We do not support the actions taken in SCR1 which potentially further limits access to reproductive healthcare,  increases the number of unplanned pregnancies and leaves vulnerable females and families having to negotiate their way through heavy-handed propaganda techniques that detour them from their right to choose.

-Catherine Fiss
Communications Intern
NARAL Pro-Choice South Dakota

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