Richmond, VA – The following quote can be attributed to Claire Guthrie Gastañaga, Executive Director of the ACLU of Virginia:
"Tens of thousands of Virginia women rely on women’s health centers, including those operated by Planned Parenthood, for high quality, affordable health care services, including contraception, cancer screenings, treatment of STIs (sexually transmitted infections) and HIV testing, and access to quality abortion services during the first trimester of pregnancy. The current attack on Planned Parenthood is just the latest in a long line of attacks seeking to close down these vital health centers simply and only because they provide abortion services. Anti-choice extremists will go to any length to stigmatize abortion providers, politicize women's health, and regulate abortion out of existence. Women who have decided to have an abortion and want to donate tissue to lifesaving medical research should have the option available to them through their health care provider, just as it is an option in other health care circumstances where organ and tissue donation is seen as a positive act. It's shameful that these extremists are politicizing tissue donation to further their own agenda, which is to ban abortion for all women in all circumstances."