Family Policy Alliance is proud to work alongside our ally, Pennsylvania Family Council.
by Dan Bartkowiak
I hope you join me and everyone in the pro-life community in celebrating great news out of Reading, Pennsylvania. Not only are teens better off this school year but Planned Parenthood is really mad.
Let me explain:
Planned Parenthood made a push this summer to gain direct access to thousands of high school students in Reading – and to have you pay for it. But, after this proposal was brought to our attention from residents, we were able to rally together with other groups such as Students for Life of America, Berks Republican Women and Pro-Life Berks to show the school board that this was not the right choice for Reading.
I’m happy to tell you that the Reading School Board, in a 5-4 decision, voted against the proposal and to keep Planned Parenthood OUT of Reading High School.
Looking back, here are a few highlights:
1) Shocking statements from newspaper editor.
Ahead of the meeting, I received an email in response to a media advisory about this upcoming board vote, which included the following:
“At Planned Parenthood women can get free mammograms… very little abortions are performed.”
You can watch a short clip highlighting my response which points out:
- Planned Parenthood isn’t even licensed to perform mammograms in Pennsylvania
- Over half of all abortions in Pennsylvania are from Planned Parenthood.
You have to listen to these statements sent to us from a Pennsylvania newspaper editor. This video was recorded just before the victorious vote by the Reading School Board to NOT have Planned Parenthood staff an office in Reading High School.To help inform and educate others about the activities of Planned Parenthood: 1) Our Resource page: pafamily.org/resources (***Make sure to download our report "Extreme: Planned Parenthood in Pennsylvania")2) Search our blog for a variety of stories on Planned Parenthood: pafamily.org/blog
Posted by Pennsylvania Family Council on Thursday, August 24, 2017
2) Diversity of the residents speaking out against this proposal.
People from both sides of this issue gathered at the door of the administration building where the vote was to take place. The school board meets in a small room and an overflow crowd spread out into the hallway.
What was striking is the first four residents to speak out; were all against the proposal: a mom who works for a teen organization in Reading, a high-school teenager, a former pregnancy center employee and a pastor.
Many of their comments were helpful, from the teenager pointing out how Planned Parenthood Keystone in Allentown failed three straight inspections – including the gruesome practice of disposing aborted babies down the sink – as well as the pastor pointing out the big business of abortion for Planned Parenthood and that the school should “stick to the business of education.”
3) Overwhelming majority against the proposal.
When it was time for the board members to discuss the proposal, several concerns were mentioned. One board member stated he counted all the emails he had received on this issue, totaling 585. He said the overwhelming majority were against the proposal.
Board members had other concerns such as the fact that no other proposal was considered, that Planned Parenthood is so close to the school (just two miles away) with no other school having such a program and that the board was never presented with evidence that showed Planned Parenthood’s proposal would actually work.
With all of these concerns, the board narrowly voted down the proposal by a 5-4 decision.
Watch this clip for more reaction after the board’s vote.
A brief recap after tonight's board meeting in Reading and the 5-4 decision to keep Planned Parenthood OUT of Reading High School. We still have work to do but certainly a tremendous victory.To be ready in the future for what Planned Parenthood might try next in PA, be sure you receive our email alerts: tinyurl.com/emailsignups
Posted by Pennsylvania Family Council on Wednesday, August 23, 2017
4) Statement by Planned Parenthood Keystone after the vote.
It appears that Planned Parenthood is fuming. Just read part of the statement they gave to WFMZ after the vote:
“These protesters don’t care about our children… They’re out-of-town bullies who used this vote to pursue a narrow political agenda without any care in the world for the young lives their actions affect.”
I’m not sure if anyone from Planned Parenthood was at the meeting, but I was there. I saw dozens of Reading residents holding signs outside against the proposal. The first four people to offer public comment were all from Reading and against this proposal.
There were also protesters yelling out in support of the proposal. Police were on the scene and the only time they had to yell to the crowd was when someone in support of the proposal was screaming at a pro-life supporter.
And if Planned Parenthood was there, they are the one’s proudly stating they are a political organization that gives millions of dollars to pro-abortion candidates.
But bottom line – thanks to this vote Planned Parenthood is not starting the school year in Reading High School being paid for by taxpayers.
Learn more about Pennsylvania Family Council.