New Pro-Life Television Ads Help Pregnant Women in Chicago, Illinois

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jan 25, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

New Pro-Life Television Ads Help Pregnant Women in Chicago

by Paul Nowak Staff Writer
January 25, 2004

Chicago, IL ( — The Caring Outreach has launched a television campaign this month in the Chicago area to help women considering abortion.

The television ads will run for at least eight weeks on all network television stations in the Chicago media market, and target women 18 to 49 years of age by airing on Days of our Lives, Dr. Phil, Oprah, The Early Show, the Today Show, and a number of news programs.

"In today’s culture it is apparent that television reaches more people and changes more minds in 30 seconds than any other medium," Jean Synovic of the Caring Outreach told "January was chosen as the optimum beginning date because more people watch TV in the winter and because we have learned that abortions are at their peak in January."

The two spots, produced by the Vitae Caring Foundation, feature the OptionLine hotline number 1-800-395-HELP sponsored by Care Net and Heartbeat International which connects callers with a local pregnancy counselor.

The first television commercial depicts a female firefighter rescuing a small child, while she reflects on how she was almost aborted. She notes that her mother’s choice saved more than one life.

The second ad involves a woman watching the ultrasound of her daughter’s unborn child. She reflects on how she was previously "pro-choice" but has had a change of heart, and wonders aloud if legalized abortion is a good idea — realizing that "we can learn a lot" in thirty years. 

According to Synovic, two local stations, WGN and WLS/ABC refused to air the latter spot entitled "Sonogram," stating it was "too touchy."

"When pro-life leadership in Illinois learned that it was possible and feasible to successfully air pro-life messages on network television, we formed an organization, The Caring Outreach, to make it happen in the Chicago media market," said Synovic. "Funding of this effort has been provided primarily by individuals with assistance from a number of foundations, organizations and churches of many denominations."

Under the original name of The Caring Institute, the organization aired their first television ad on all network television stations with the exception of ABC in February and March of 2000. With over 3 million households in 12 Illinois and 5 Indiana counties, the Chicago media market is the third largest in the country.

Synovic says the ad campaign is particularly urgent in Illinois, as the number of abortions increased in there in 2001 and 2002, even as the abortion rate is dropping across the country.

"One ad was on the air for a seven-week period, encouraging pregnant women to call a 1-800 number for needed assistance. The ad generated over 2000 calls in a two-month period to our local [abortion] alternative agencies," said Synovic. "We know that it saved at least two lives and that their mothers were spared the agony of an abortion."