Haiti Appeal from Planned Parenthood Hit; Pro-Lifers Argue Fundraiser Exploits Natural Disaster

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Byline: Valerie Richardson, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Pro-life groups are accusing Planned Parenthood of taking advantage of the humanitarian catastrophe in Haiti to promote a pro-choice agenda.

Days after the devastating Jan. 12 earthquake, the International Planned Parenthood Federation Western Hemisphere Region (IPPF/WHR) sent out a fundraising appeal to help rebuild two clinics that were destroyed in Port-au-Prince and Jacmel.

The clinics are operated by PROFAMIL, a member association that provides sexual and reproductive health services, including abortions. The fundraising post said that PROFAMIL is setting up a temporary stationary clinic and mobile-health units to provide basic first aid, as well as obstetric care and family planning.

Outrage over the appeal quickly spread through the pro-life community and its related blogs. Rita Diller, national director of Stop Planned Parenthood, said on LifeSiteNews.com that the group was using the disaster and the suffering in Haiti to raise money to perpetuate itself.

While millions of people are suffering unbelievably and are without the most basic necessities, Planned Parenthood wants to grab the donations that should be going to provide medical care, food, clothing and housing, and funnel it to its local affiliate that pushes condoms on children as young as 10 years old, she said.

Liz Clark, a spokeswoman for the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, declined to comment, saying that her group and the IPPF/WHR were not the same organization.

The IPPF/WHR did not return two phone calls placed over two days asking for comment. According to the IPPF/WHR Web site, the Planned Parenthood Federation of America was one of the IPPF/WHR's eight founders, and remains its member association in the United States. PPFA has its own international program and doesn't receiving funding from the group.

At the same time, the PPFA continues to work with the international group; for example, it lent support to the Haiti effort by posting the IPPF/WHR's fundraising appeal on its Facebook page.

Defenders of Planned Parenthood insisted that critics were jumping to the wrong conclusions. Dawn Stacey, a former Planned Parenthood pregnancy-options counselor who now serves as About. …