New York Planned Parenthood Affiliate Leaves Organization Over On-Site Abortion Care Policy
December 10, 2012 — A Planned Parenthood affiliate in New York state has decided to split from the parent organization, NBC News reports.
Planned Parenthood in 2010 issued a directive requiring its 74 regional affiliates to offer a standard roster of family planning services in at least one of their clinics by 2013. The list includes "well-woman" exams, cancer screenings, and testing for HIV and sexually transmitted infections. Affiliates also must provide on-site abortion care; about 10% of affiliates previously did not offer such services.
Planned Parenthood of South Central New York, which operates five clinics, will become Family Planning of South Central New York on March 1, 2013. Ingrid Husisian -- a spokesperson for the affiliate -- said it decided to become independent for financial reasons. She noted that there are several other abortion providers in the area, and that "if we comply with the on-site mandate, we would be duplicating services already provided in the counties we serve." PPSCNY would "absolutely" offer on-site abortions if there were no other local providers, she said, adding that the group "continues to support the mission of Planned Parenthood."
PPSCNY is thought to be the third Planned Parenthood affiliate around the nation that "disaffiliated" itself because of the new policy, according to NBC News. The two other affiliates -- Tri-Rivers Planned Parenthood in Missouri and Planned Parenthood of Coastal Bend in Texas -- said their decisions were not for political reasons.
However, the antiabortion group Susan B. Anthony List in a statement said that PPSCNY is "the latest affiliate to become independent because it won't comply with the rule," adding that the policy is "the ultimate evidence that Planned Parenthood's chief concern is making money off abortion -- not the health of vulnerable women and girls."
Planned Parenthood officials said the policy has been "sensationalized" by abortion-rights opponents, adding that the policy seeks to ensure that Planned Parenthood affiliates -- including those that serve rural or medically underserved areas -- offer a consistent set of family planning services (Johnson, NBC News, 12/7).