Planned Parenthood under fire over sex-selective abortions, undercover video

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by Quita Culpepper / KVUE.com

khou.com

Posted on May 31, 2012 at 12:04 PM

AUSTIN, Texas -- An undercover sting operation by an anti-abortion group is targeting Planned Parenthood in Austin. It comes at a time lawmakers are debating the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act. 

Sex-selection abortion is a practice that's widespread in countries like China and India, and now some say it's a growing trend in the U.S. as well. An undercover video by one anti-abortion group is bringing the issue to the forefront.
 
The video is by the group Live Action. It was shot inside a South Austin Planned Parenthood. The woman behind the hidden camera is shown speaking with a staff member and tells her if her baby is a girl, she wants an abortion.
 
“I see that you say you want to terminate if it's a girl, so do you want to continue the pregnancy in the meantime?” the staff member said.
 
The woman with the hidden camera asks, “But you think I still just shouldn't tell them I would be terminating if it's a girl?”
 
The staff member answers, ”Right. I would because more than likely they could even, I mean, they could even refuse to continue to see you if you're just going to terminate.”
 
At the end of the visit, the staffer tells the woman, “Good luck, and I hope that you do get your boy.”
  
Planned Parenthood tells KVUE News the staff member seen in the video was fired three days after the conversation was recorded. All employees at that clinic have been retrained.
 
In a statement, Planned Parenthood spokesperson Sarah Wheat says, ”Planned Parenthood condemns sex selection motivated by gender bias and does not offer services that inform women of the sex of a fetus."
 
A study by the Guttmacher Institute claims sex-selective abortion is "not a pervasive or growing problem in the U.S.” It cites the 2005 U.S. sex ratio birth data which is 105 boys to 100 girls -- a ratio "that is squarely within biologically normal parameters."
 
The study also says gender inequality cannot be solved by banning abortion.
 
Anti-abortion groups dispute these findings and say video doesn't lie.
 
Lawmakers in Congress debated the measure Wednesday afternoon. They are slated to vote on it Thursday. If the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act passes, it would punish doctors with up to five years in prison for performing sex-selected abortions.

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