The original anti-abortion protest, created to call attention to Planned Parenthood and strip it of federal funding, was organized by Citizens for a Pro-Life Society and took place at Planned Parenthood centers across MI.
Supporters of Planned Parenthood display signs near a pro-life rally in front of the Planned Parenthood offices Saturday, Feb. 11, 2017 on Yadkin Road. Republicans in Congress have vowed to pass legislation that bars the family planning provider from accepting hundreds of millions of dollars in federal Medicaid reimbursements.
Yet, thousands of local clinics can offer all of the same services, minus abortion, and provide even better care for the health needs of women and their children.
More than 50 critics of Planned Parenthood marched with yellow "Choose Life" signs and calls to defund Planned Parenthood.
After spending roughly 40 years as a staunch pro-life advocate, the 77-year-old Turner said she finally feels like there's hope for a change."We're getting closer but we're not there yet", the Exeter Township woman said.
She said Planned Parenthood would be open today.
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Jennifer Childs-Roshak, the president of the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of MA, stressed that rally organizers "refuse to let extreme politicians take us backwards".
In addition to Valentin, state Rep. Aaron Vega, D-Holyoke, WEIB radio host Reverend Alysia Cutting and others will address issues regarding "reproductive justice" and access to health care services.
One of the counter-protest marshals, Sara Byczek, of Detroit, described the large turnout as an "organic" event spurred by social media, especially Facebook postings. Caudill told Vox that she was inspired to take action by the Women's March, which she had attended with her daughter. Spilman said she still recalls how she was protesting another time in Morristown against abortion and a woman approached her crying, saying she regretted the abortion she had. It was not planned, she said, and her fiancé at the time was not ready to be a father.
"I support keeping our rights and Trump is going to take them from us", said Planned Parenthood supporter Corina Paulson. "It can strain their resources, and it's inevitably not great for patients who are already in a stressful situation".
The ProtestPP website said anti-abortion activists will gather outside the Eugene-Springfield Health Center, 3579 Franklin Boulevard, and in Portland at the NE Portland Center, 3727 NE Martin Luther King Jr.