by Steven Ertelt
June 14, 2007
Manchester, NH (LifeNews.com) — New Hampshire pro-life advocates are asking that they be given equal time to talk with students at a Manchester public middle school after they were taken to a local Planned Parenthood abortion business on a field trip. The YMCA took the students, who were part of an at-risk program in conjunction with the school district, to the abortion center without parental knowledge or permission.
“We request that the same children be allowed to sit with an educator from New Hampshire Right to Life,” Darlene Pawlik, the group’s president, said at the school board meeting Monday night, according to an AP report.
Officials at Planned Parenthood say they were proud to be placed on the list of destinations the YMCA put together for the students to attend.
Anne Johnson, a representative of the abortion center, said she didn’t talk to the students about abortion during the three four minute presentation, but used her to talk to promote the use of contraception.
Still, Pawlik told the Associated Press that should have no bearing on weather pro-life advocates are allowed to speak to the students to make sure they hear both sides of the issue.
“Everybody knows Planned Parenthood performs abortions,” she said. “There were protesters outside with signs saying, ‘Babies killed here.’ There’s no mistaking that (the students) have already been exposed to the issue.”
Superintendent Michael Ludwell said he would need to see a formal request to address the students before he would make a decision on whether a representative of the New Hampshire pro-life group can meet with them. But he questioned whether exposing the seventh and eight grade students to another speaker on the sensitive issue would be a good idea.
The Monday night board meeting resulted in a decision to ask the school district to investigate how the decision was made to take the students to an abortion business and whether any disciplinary actions should be taken against those who decided.
The vote will also likely result policy changes preventing a future trip to an abortion center from happening again.