CHARLETTETOWN –Planned Parenthood’s efforts to reestablish a Prince Edward Island chapter reveal restlessness on the part of the worldwide contraception-promoting organization.
Despite being rejected by local residents in 1982, Planned Parenthood spent a good part of 1996 attempting to convince the provincial government that it enjoys a measure of community support.
“If ever there was a place that needed Planned Parenthood, it’s PEI,” said Bonnie Johnson, the federation’s Executive Director, in a fund-raising letter circulated last summer.
In attempting to justify Planned Parenthood’s return to PEI, feminist groups said there was an urgent need for birth control information on the island. They suggested PEI has one of the highest rates of teen pregnancy in the country and that chastity and abstinence-based sex education programs have proven inadequate.
Pro-family groups however, pointed out that PEI has the second lowest teen pregnancy rate in the country. As well, incidence of sexually transmitted disease in PEI is virtually nil.
If nothing else, this latest initiative by Planned Parenthood shows the organization’s determination to win back lost ground. In the face of non-existent public support and determined resistance by pro-family forces, Planned Parenthood continues to knock at the door.
(-with files from Doreen Beagan)