Here we go again with Fox News and their lies. This time Fox News attacked a partnership between Planned Parenthood and a Los Angeles area high school for entering into a partnership to provide counseling, birth control and STD screenings to high school kids in an effort to stem the tide of unplanned pregnancies. The partnership has worked well and enjoys the support of the community in which it serves without any objections from the parents.
As part of their continuing assault on Planned Parenthood, Fox News called the school’s clinic, which is run by Planned Parenthood, “controversial” and promoted the objections of critics of the program. In his report on the program, Fox & Friends co-host Steve Doocy stated:
A controversial move in California: Some high schools there in California now allowing Planned Parenthood to set up shop at some high schools. They’ll provide students with free birth control, counseling, and pregnancy tests at the high school. Critics say this should be done by parents and not through the school.
The problem with his comment is that the parents actually support this program. According to the Los Angeles Times, one school, Roosevelt High School, is partnering with Planned Parenthood to staff a reproductive and primary health care clinic. But the article reported that, according to the local Planned Parenthood chapter, parents in the school want their children to have access to reproductive health care. The article states that:
Planned Parenthood’s Los Angeles executive director, Sue Dunlap, said Latino families generally want access to information and care. “We really don’t experience the traditional narrative of angry parents not wanting access to reproductive care in the schools,” she said. “It’s really the opposite.”
Moreover, there is a reason why students are given opportunities to make their own health care decisions instead of it only being “done by parents.” Requiring parental consent for students to receive birth control at the clinic would actually be a violation of California law. According to a report on the Los Angeles County government’s website, in California,
A minor may receive birth control without parental consent.
Although Planned Parenthood’s involvement is a more recent development, the existence of the clinic is nothing new. And when the clinic temporarily closed, there were reportedly a rash of positive pregnancy test, which slowed after the clinic re-opened. From The Times:
The campus began offering contraception and counseling in 1997. But in 2006, a collaboration with a local hospital ended and the school no longer had the resources to provide free contraceptives. In 2008, [Sherry] Medrano [the nurse practitioner who runs the Roosevelt health clinic] said, she saw 32 positive pregnancy tests during her peak period between March 1 and June 1 — around the time of spring break and prom.
I personally don’t see the problem in this partnership. Fox News claims that critics should leave this up to parents and not the school, but a lot of teens don’t feel comfortable going to their parents with this kind of thing. Parents can actually be destructive towards their children’s health in this respect. Despite what the critics (Right Wingers) wants to believe, parents are not always the answer and, in some cases, can be the problem.
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