In July, a federal judge blocked NYC's law that requires "crisis pregnancy centers" to disclose whether they offer abortions and whether there's licensed medical care. Crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) usually set up near Planned Parenthood offices, stopping women who are headed to Planned Parenthood and tell them, "We can do a free ultrasound and help you with prenatal care, all you have to do is say yes to life." But CPCs are not licensed medical providers.
A critic of CPCs, Lisa Maldonado, executive director of Reproductive Health Access Project in Manhattan, told the Daily News, There are more crisis pregnancy centers than there are abortion clinics. And they usually lure women in with advertising for free medical care, provide biased counseling and apply pressure tactics," but after the judge's ruling, a CPC founder called it a victory for First Amendment rights. The city is appealing the ruling, and Jezebel just published a harrowing account of a young woman mistakenly going to a CPC:
First she handed me some pamphlets. I opened one and it was a graphic illustration of an abortion, a cutaway of a fetus being pulled apart. I snapped it closed, saying to myself, that's not what I'm doing. A medication abortion, what I wanted to have, wouldn't look like that.
The bed she led me to looked very much like it was in a doctor's office. I knew to expect the sonogram machine. That's when she started asking the questions -- what religion my parents were, where they lived, what they did for a living, what my boyfriend and I did for a living. The other girl, the one from the front desk, began the sonogram.
"It looks like you're about three and a half months pregnant," the older woman announced cheerfully.
Then she turned the monitor to me. I have so many little brothers and sisters. I was with my mother the first time she heard my younger siblings heartbeat. There was a heartbeat now, too.
By that point, I was crying hysterically.
"I think you're going to be a really great mother," she continued. "Wouldn't your mother love to take care of this baby?"
The younger girl was nodding and pointing at the sonogram. "Look how cute!" she exclaimed.
In July, Planned Parenthood NYC Vice President of Public Affairs, Simone Ward, said, "We are disappointed, but not discouraged by this ruling, and will stand by the New York City Council as they continue to fight to protect the health and safety of the men, women and teens we serve as well as of all New Yorkers. Let’s not forget, these centers purposefully deceive women, and dissuade them from seeking safe, legal and often lifesaving health care. They have lied to our patients, and given our patients false information under the guise of providing factual medical advice. This law has nothing to do with ideology and everything to do with protecting New Yorkers, and removing the barriers that prevent the men, women and teens of New York City have from accessing safe, high-quality medical care."