Portland, Oregon Builder Talks About Stopping Work on Planned Parenthood Abortion Center
by Steven Ertelt
July 3, 2008
Portland, OR (LifeNews.com) — The head of the construction company that was set to help Planned Parenthood build a new multi-million dollar abortion business and pulled out is saying more about his decision. As LifeNews.com reported in May, Bob Walsh, the head of Walsh Construction Company, bowed out of building the new headquarters for Planned Parenthood in Oregon.
However, Walsh told a newspaper on Tuesday that he didnt do so because he or his company is opposed to abortion.
Walsh said he signed on two years ago to build a medical clinic but bowed out when he learned more about the main tenant, Parenthood of the Columbia/Willamette. He said he spoke to the heads of other construction companies in other cities that build abortion centers and learned they became the subject of pro-life protests.
He said he worried that he and leaders of his construction firm would be subjected to protests at his home and office that he worried would be offensive to his family and neighbors.
"It’s disruptive and very threatening," he told the Oregonian newspaper. "I just didn’t want to put my family through that."
Tough Walshs firm is no longer on the project, that doesnt mean it wont go forward. The abortion center is moving on with the developer, Beech Street Partners, assembling other builders and acting as its own general contractor.
Ankrom Moisan Architects is also staying on as the building designer because Beech Street Partners is a long-time client, according to an Associated Press article.
Kip Richardson of AMA told AP that Beech Street Partners is trying to do the right thing and improve that neighborhood he said of building the Planned Parenthood abortion center in a historically black neighborhood that Portland leaders are trying to redevelop.
Bill Diss, the director of the pro-life organization Precious Children of Portland, which rose up to oppose the new abortion facility, said hes glad Walsh is gone but said the battle against the new center continues.
"It was a nice thing that Walsh got out. The battle still goes on," he told the Catholic Sentinel newspaper.
He pointed out that Andrew Beyer, project manager for Walsh, has expressed support for the Planned Parenthood abortion center and called it "an important project in the redevelopment of Northeast Portland."
Opponents of the new abortion center have said Planned Parenthood officials are preying on black women, who have abortions at much higher rates than their white counterparts.
"They are rich white people who say that they love the blacks, who give them the name of a street and then kill their children," Carolyn Wendell of Voice of Catholics Advocating Life, has said. "I don’t think that’s appropriate."
Pro-life advocates are concerned the new abortion business will increase the number of abortions in a state that has seen good news recently in getting abortions to go down.
Thanks to efforts from Oregon Right to Life and crisis pregnancy centers, abortions in Oregon are down to their lowest levels since 1998, having decreased 20 percent between then and 2004, the latest year from which state data is available.
The Oregon Department of Human Services reported 14,344 abortions in 1998, but that number decreased to 11,443 abortions in 2004.
In 2006, Oregonians voted against a measure to let parents know when their teenage daughters are considering an abortion by a 54-46 percentage margin after Planned Parenthood outspent pro-life advocates 3-1 and flooded the airwaves with a misleading television commercials.
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