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Anti-choice “crisis pregnancy centers” (CPCs) advertise themselves as clinics dedicated to providing medical care, counseling, and information to pregnant individuals. But a CPC’s true purpose is to prevent pregnant individuals from seeking abortion services at legitimate family-planning clinics. Staff at a CPC deliberately provide clients with misinformation on abortion, fetal development, contraceptive use, and conception in order to present abortion as a non-option. Often, despite presenting itself as a medical facility, a CPC has no licensed medical professional onsite. 

Make no mistake: CPCs are not there to help. Staff members at CPCs will lie to, shame, and scare pregnant individuals in order to prevent them from seeking abortion care. They may pressure pregnant individuals to enter into dangerous situations to raise a child, or to cut ties with support networks. In some cases, CPC staff have been known to keep pregnant individuals in the facility against their will. In short, CPCs are a threat to public safety and health. Visiting one can be a traumatic experience, and it is in every individual’s best interest to visit a legitimate family-planning clinic instead.

 

How to Recognize a Crisis Pregnancy Center

  • Ask if there is a licensed medical professional onsite. Most CPCs will not have one. Every family-planning clinic will.
  • Does the website or exterior advertise free pre-abortion counseling, pregnancy tests, or ultrasounds? This first service is not offered at real clinics, and the latter two are rarely provided free of charge due to operating expenses. All three are used to pressure pregnant individuals into carrying to term.
  • Check the medical information on the center’s website. Does it match the information provided on a government website? If not, it’s probably a CPC purposefully providing misinformation.
  • Is the facility affiliated with an anti-choice/”pro-life” religious organization? This may be as subtle as being located in the same building or on the same lot as a place or worship. If so, it’s probably a CPC.
  • Does the center make religious references when providing information? Most legitimate family-planning clinics try to keep a secular tone when counseling patients.
  • Is the facility part of an anti-choice/”pro-life” medical group? This is a sure sign of a CPC.
  • Check online reviews of the facility. Is there a bad review from someone who was shamed, harassed, or otherwise pressured to carry to term? No legitimate clinic will do this.
  • Inquire about birth control, condoms, and STI testing and treatment. While legitimate clinics may not provide all of these services, they will usually provide at least some. In contrast, a CPC rarely provides any. But be careful: CPCs are not above lying about what services they provide to trick pregnant individuals into visiting their facility.
  • Ask whether the facility provides abortion care. Not all legitimate clinics do, but those that don’t will give you a straight answer and provide a referral. No CPC provides abortion care or referrals to a different facility. As with the last point, don’t use this as your only test—some CPCs may claim to provide abortion services or give ambiguous answers in order to attract clients.

Known Crisis Pregnancy Centers

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