Yelp Backs Down, Stops Making False Claim That Pregnancy Centers are Not Medical Clinics

National   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Feb 9, 2023   |   2:10PM   |   Washington, DC

Yelp will change the way its website describes pregnancy resource centers after state attorneys general accused the company of discriminating against the pro-life charities earlier this week.

According to Axios, the company plans to remove a misleading label that claimed pro-life pregnancy centers “provide limited medical services and may not have licensed medical professionals onsite,” and replace it with language that simply says the organizations do not provide abortions. Most pregnancy centers provide medical services and either have medical staff on site or available by referral.

Last year, Yelp began sticking the warning label on the pregnancy resource center listings on its website – using language that 24 state attorneys general said misrepresented the services of the pro-life centers.

“Crisis pregnancy centers provide compassion and support to women in a time of need, at little to no cost. They are private charities that have bore the brunt of political attacks from politicians and corporations who disagree with their mission, and Yelp’s recent announcement is no different. Yelp’s unilateral targeting of crisis pregnancy centers is wrong and discriminatory,” Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares wrote to the company, joined by 23 others.

They said applying the label to all crisis pregnancy centers but not to Planned Parenthood and other abortion facilities is discriminatory.

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“The fact that Yelp has apparently applied the Consumer Notice only to crisis pregnancy centers means that Yelp has singled out crisis pregnancy centers for disparate treatment. This sort of discrimination is unacceptable,” the state leaders continued.

On Wednesday, Yelp general counsel Aaron Schur defended the company’s decision in a letter to the attorneys general, according to Axios. However, the company also admitted that it is changing the label, basically a tacit admission of its poor word choice.

“Yelp’s mission focuses on connecting members of the public with the businesses that they seek to find, and Yelp’s categorization of businesses, including Crisis Pregnancy Centers, and associated notification, reflect that mission,” Schur wrote in the letter, the report continues.

The company attorney also reminded the state leaders that Yelp does not block pregnancy centers from its website.

“Yelp’s Crisis Pregnancy Center notification, which it implemented in August 2022, is another way Yelp helps connect members of the public with the actual healthcare services that they seek,” Schur wrote. “While some people come to Yelp to find businesses that offer pregnancy resources, there are others who turn to Yelp to find reliable information about abortion providers.”

Approximately 3,000 pro-life pregnancy centers exist across America to provide accurate and compassionate information and support for free to pregnant and parenting mothers. Their services frequently include pregnancy tests, ultrasounds and STD tests overseen by licensed medical professionals, counseling, education classes and material supplies such as diapers, cribs, baby clothes and formula.

Despite their good work, pregnancy centers increasingly have become a target of pro-abortion politicians, the abortion industry and radical abortion activists. Several have been firebombed and dozens have been vandalized in the past year.

According to an analysis by the Charlotte Lozier Institute, pregnancy centers have helped save more than 800,000 unborn babies from abortion since 2016.

Helping mothers choose life for their babies is a good thing, and even research by abortion activists supports this. A widely touted project by pro-abortion researchers at the University of California San Francisco found that 96 percent of mothers who wanted but were denied abortions later were glad that they had their babies.

Research by the Charlotte Lozier Institute found an estimated 3,000 pro-life pregnancy resource centers served about 2 million people in 2019, providing more than 730,000 pregnancy tests, nearly half a million ultrasounds, 1.3 million packs of diapers and more than 2 million baby outfits, all for free. Many offer post-abortion counseling as well.