Washington Trust Bank Funded Portland Planned Parenthood Abortion Ctr

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 10, 2011   |   3:34PM   |   Portland, OR

A community bank that operates in the Pacific Northwest is under fire from pro-life advocates for financing the new Planned Parenthood abortion business it recently built in Portland, Oregon.

Washington Trust Bank funded the loan that made the new abortion facility possible, according to records the Catholic Sentinel newspaper obtained recently. The Spokane, Washington-based bank loaned $5.5 million to Beech Street Partners, which developed the new abortion facility and the newspaper indicates the loan papers bear the signatures of David Greenberg, CEO of Planned Parenthood and Gisel Hillner, vice president of Washington Trust Bank.

“It is very clear that the bank has a vested interest in the success of Planned Parenthood, since Planned Parenthood is the source of funds for repayment of the loan,” Oregon pro-life advocate Ed Kluss told the Sentinel.

Ironically, Peter Stanton, current chairman of the board and CEO, and whose family has led Washington Trust Bank for almost 100 years, is a member of the board of directors of Gonzaga University, a Catholic college.

That prompted Gayle Atteberry of Oregon Right to Life to tell LifeNews.com that the Stanton family needs to decide which side of the Catholic fence they are on — the faithful pro-life side or the side that facilitates abortions outside the Church’s pro-life views.

“It is more than outrageous that the man who is ultimately responsible for Planned Parenthood’s loan also sits on the board of Gonzaga University. He needs to decide whom he will serve — either God or mammon,” Atteberry said.

The $12.5 million fundraising campaign that was responsible for building the new Planned Parenthood abortion facility in a historically African-American neighborhood in Portland  came to a close late last year. The new abortion center has come under fire because it has Planned Parenthood preying on black residents of the large Oregon city.

The building of the abortion business upset residents because it is located at Northeast Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Beech Street. Despite boycotts of contractors, builders and plumbers, Planned Parenthood was able to complete the new abortion facility.

The financial campaign to build the center ultimately raised the full amount Planned Parenthood needed to build it and the Portland Business Journal indicated approximately $9 million came from private donors and another $2 million came from an endowment. Spirit Mountain Community Fund pledged $50,000 toward the expansion project, and The Oregon Community Foundation awarded PPCW a $75,000 grant toward the new facility.

But $1.5 million for the project came from tax credits — which had pro-life advocates upset further.

Atteberry told LifeNews.com earlier this year that Planned Parenthood officials have been telling state and local residents that much of its mission centers on non-abortion activities. She pointed to the organization’s 2007-2008 national annual report as revealing its “commitment to its abortion business.”

“Despite its humanitarian-sounding talk and non-profit status, Planned Parenthood is a business focused on making money,” Atteberry said. “Tragically, a significant portion of their booming clinic business is ending the lives of unborn babies.”

Atteberry says the annual report shows abortions performed at Planned Parenthood clinics around the nation increased 5.3% over the previous year, totaling 305,310 abortions, approximately 25% of all abortions done in the United States.

“Abortions at Planned Parenthood clinics have nearly doubled in the past 10 years, while at the same time total abortions have dropped nearly every year,” she added.

Atteberry noted that Planned Parenthood’s national income, including federal grants, grew last year to over one billion dollars. Planned Parenthood in Oregon contracts with the Oregon Health Plan for abortions performed.

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.

ACTION: Contact Washington Trust Bank with your complaints at:  https://www.watrust.com/AboutUs/ContactUs.aspx