Maryland Pro-Abortion Bill Threatening Pregnancy Centers Dies as Session Ends
by Steven Ertelt
April 9, 2008
Annapolis, MD (LifeNews.com) — A leading trade group of crisis pregnancy centers in the United States is delighted the Maryland legislature has defeated a pro-abortion bill that would have placed onerous restrictions on them. Abortion advocates sponsored the legislation to target centers that provide abortion alternatives.
The legislation began when the Maryland affiliate of NARAL, a top pro-abortion group, unveiled an "investigative report" supposedly showing pregnancy centers in the Atlantic state giving women false information.
The pro-abortion group complained the centers were giving women information on the possible medical, mental health and other risks associated with an abortion, including the risk of contracting breast cancer.
NARAL then used the concocted report to inspire Maryland Senate Bill 690 and House Bill 1146.
The legislation that would have forced pregnancy centers to provide a disclaimer that says we are not required to give medically accurate information to all potential clients in their first meeting with center officials.
Both bills received hearings in the Senate Finance and the House Health and Government Operations committees.
Officials with Care Net and a coalition of pregnancy centers, former clients, medical professionals, research experts, attorneys, organization leaders and local officials testified against the legislation.
With the legislature adjourning for the session the bill is now dead — never having received a vote.
That’s good news for Care Net President Melinda Delahoyde, who told LifeNews.com the centers can continue their mission to help women.
"We are glad to see that legislators in Maryland truly understand the good work of pregnancy centers and the tremendous service they provide to communities throughout the state," she said.
Delahoyde said the silver lining in the work to oppose the bill was the ability of pregnancy center to receive greater name recognition and have the ability to tout the work they do assisting pregnant women.
"What was perhaps intended to hurt our work actually turned out to be a great educational opportunity for legislators," she said.
Despite attempts by some abortion advocacy groups to promote a negative view of pregnancy centers, these centers continue to grow in impact and increase in number across the country.
Care Net oversees 1,100 pregnancy centers and more than 3,500 are spread across the United States and Canada.
Most clients find pregnancy centers by word-of-mouth, and exit surveys show that clients are highly satisfied with pregnancy center services. Care Net Pregnancy Center of Frederick, Maryland reports that 99% of their clients provide overwhelmingly positive feedback.
Related web sites:
Care Net – https://www.care-net.org