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April 1, 2008

Pro-Choice Americans Praise Sen. Menendez for Introducing Commonsense Bill Aimed at So-Called "Crisis Pregnancy Centers"

Bush administration has channeled millions of federal tax dollars to fake "clinics" that falsely advertise as comprehensive women's health centers

Washington, DC - Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, today praised Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) for introducing the Stop Deceptive Advertising for Women's Services Act - a bill that would grant the Federal Trade Commission the authority to protect women from anti-choice "crisis pregnancy centers" (CPCs). Many of these "clinics" are not regulated and falsely advertise that they offer abortion services or counseling, when in fact they are centers created solely to dissuade women from exercising their right to choose.

"We applaud Sen. Menendez's leadership in support of unbiased, medically accurate information. Many CPCs use deceptive and manipulative tactics that prevent women from making fully informed choices about their reproductive health," Keenan said. "It's time for Congress to step in and hold these fake 'clinics' accountable. Americans value honesty in advertising and these anti-choice operations should not be exempt from this basic principle."

Making matters worse, Keenan said that, according to a 2006 Washington Post article, the Bush administration has given these fake "clinics" more than $60 million in taxpayer dollars.

"Hardworking Americans should not have to foot the bill for anti-choice groups that pose as health clinics, misrepresent the services they provide, and in some cases even harass and intimidate the unsuspecting women they lure into their centers," Keenan said.

NARAL Pro-Choice America and its affiliate network have long worked to expose the deceptive practices of certain CPCs. Many CPCs list themselves in the yellow pages of phone directories under the headings "abortion," "abortion alternatives," "abortion services," "family planning information centers" or "women's organization" even though the only "abortion service" they provide is to dissuade women from exercising their right to choose by using anti-choice propaganda.

Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) introduced identical legislation in the House last summer.

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