Sarasota, Florida Planned Parenthood Denied Govt Funds Now Does Abortions
by Steven Ertelt
December 31, 2008
Sarasota, FL (LifeNews.com) — In October, county officials in Sarasota County in Florida cut thousands of dollars of funding to a local Planned Parenthood. Now, pro-life advocates say the facility has started doing abortions in what may be an attempt to generate more in annual income.
Officials, citing poor economic conditions and the need to better balance the city budget, removed the second $12,500 of the original $25,000 allocated for Planned Parenthood family planning programs.
Despite the efforts of dedicated pro-lifers in Sarasota, Planned Parenthood has opened its new abortion center and did abortions for the first time last Friday.
Jim Sedlak, the head of STOPP International, a Planned Parenthood watchdog group, shed more light on the situation in an email to LifeNews.com.
"Planned Parenthood was met by a group of pro-lifers who are dedicated to be present whenever babies are scheduled to die," he said.
Jim Styer, a top pro-life advocate in the local area, said a dozen people showed up at the new location, 736 Central Avenue, between 7th and 8th Streets.
He said Planned Parenthood’s traffic was lower than normal, indicating to him that the abortion practitioner who arrived earlier in the day did not do as many abortions as he may have hoped.
Styer said the location of the new abortion center gives his outreach more visibility.
"Although abortions still were done, the first abortion day at the new facility otherwise went very well from our perspective. The former location was on a little-used side street. Here, more pedestrians and more vehicles come by, thus noticing our pro-life signs," he said.
Styer said the new Planned Parenthood facility caused some concern for a furniture store business across the street because it didn’t have clear signs showing parking in the rear of the building.
He said Planned Parenthood officials simply made a sign on a piece of paper indicating the location of parking.
"Considering that millions of dollars went into this structure, a crude sign seemed quite incongruous," he said. "Some Planned Parenthood clients parked across the street in a furniture store parking lot. Eventually, a patrolman notified the CEO that the store owner doesn’t want anyone parking there except his customers."
Styer also said local police told him he had no concerns with their presence at the abortion center.
Nationally, Planned Parenthood took in more than $1 billion in revenues in the last fiscal year and Planned Parenthood of Southwest & Central Florida, which runs the new abortion center, has a total budget of $8 million.
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