The pro-life group Live Action has released a series of videos documenting cases where Planned Parenthood failed to report statutory rape and sent underage girls home with their abusers.
In every state, a young teen who has sex with an adult is considered a victim of statutory rape and sexual exploitation. Some of these are cases of incest, where a girl is coerced into sex with a father, step-father, or other family member. In these cases, the girl is caught in an abusive situation. When young girls “date” and have sex with adult men in their late twenties and thirties, they are being taken advantage of by adults who manipulate and intimidate them. These relationships are based on exploitation.
Former Planned Parenthood workers have admitted that they sent underage girls back to their abusers without reporting the abuse. In a video released by Live Action, workers talk about their experiences.
Former sex educator Monica Cline was asked to train Planned Parenthood workers about reporting cases of statutory rape. She describes what happened when she told a group of workers about mandatory reporting:
I was teaching on human trafficking and statutory rape and was telling Planned Parenthood staff of Corpus Christi and the Gulf Coast basically, you’ve got to report when you see a girl coming in with an older man who that you can tell is not her father. You know something’s wrong, you’ve got to report that, it’s considered human trafficking. It is also considered statutory rape; you’ve got to report this. And they started laughing. And I said, “I don’t think there was anything I said that was funny. What’s going on here?” And the response was, “Honey, if she’s not having sex with this man this week she’ll have another one next week.” … One of the things that they even mentioned was, they adopted George Bush’s don’t ask, don’t tell in the military for homosexuality, so they said well if it’s good enough for Bush, it’s good enough for us. If we don’t ask how old her partner is, we don’t have to tell.
Cline was so troubled by the workers’ attitudes that she spoke to her superior about it. Her superior told her that her job was to give the information, not to worry about whether the abortion workers followed it. She was advised not to push the issue.
Former Planned Parenthood manager Sue Thayer was also interviewed by Lila Rose in the video. Thayer says:
We were all required to be mandatory reporters, but if we saw a case… questionable abuse, or even for sure — I mean, this kid is being abused – um, we really were discouraged from calling it in, just because, uh, they didn’t want to have the trouble, the angry parent, the angry boyfriend, whatever it was. So, more than once I was told, “No, that is not reportable – you don’t need to call it in.”
Lila Rose then asked Thayer if Planned Parenthood changed its policy on reporting statutory rape after Live Action’s investigation in 2008. In that investigation, Lila Rose went to Planned Parenthood facilities claiming to be the victim of statutory rape. She recorded Planned Parenthood workers advising her to lie about her age so that the abuse would not have to be reported.
Rose wanted to know whether Planned Parenthood changed their policies after this happened. Thayer told her that soon after the undercover videos came out, Planned Parenthood put Lila Rose’s picture on the wall and encouraged workers to look out for her. However, they did not take steps to change their policy about statutory rape. They did not retrain the workers or change their policies.
Thayer also recalls one time where she did report a situation of statutory rape and Planned Parenthood’s reaction:
I actually did call in a suspected case one time, and I got in trouble for that. [I] should’ve called management first and found out if that was reportable or not, and I just called it in because I knew that it needed to be reported, and I was a mandatory reporter because of being a foster parent as well. So I felt like I really needed to. But that was frowned upon.
Former Planned Parenthood worker Catherine Adair had a similar story:
So many things would happen in that counseling room that really bothered me. There’d be girls coming in with their abusers. Against all protocol, the abuser would be you know, let in to the counseling room that was where they were supposed to be separated from who they were with – men were never allowed back there, but with these young girls, they’d be allowed back there because – even if they knew – even if I would go to the manager, and I said, “Look, there’s something going on here.” – She would say, “She’s better off with the abortion. We can’t do anything about what’s going on at home but at least we can give her the abortion.”
Not only did Planned Parenthood not report cases of statutory rape, they gave the girls’ abusers extra privileges to shadow the girls while they were having their abortions. In this way, Planned Parenthood actively aided the abusers.
Although Planned Parenthood sets itself up as a champion for women, it is clear that they do not have women’s best interests at heart. In this and many other cases, Planned Parenthood exploits women for financial gain. They are not protecting vulnerable teens who come to them seeking abortions or birth control. Instead, they are helping their abusers.
[Today’s guest post by Sarah Terzo is part of our paid blogging program.]