NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota

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Crisis Pregnancy Centers

In 2005, the Minnesota Legislature created the Positive Alternatives grant program to appropriate $2.4 million annually to fund alternatives to abortion programs throughout the state.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of these funds have ended up in the hands of anti-choice crisis pregnancy centers, rather than legitimate direct service providers.

Who receives these funds?

In 2011, 23 of the 31grantees of the Positive Alternatives funds were crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs). CPCs are the ‘provider’ arm of the anti-choice movement. They usually offer free pregnancy testing, biased counseling, supplies and ultrasounds to women experiencing unplanned pregnancies. They provide women with incomplete or inaccurate information regarding family planning, pregnancy, or abortion.

What are the funds used for?

The intent of the legislation was to support alternatives to abortion programs that aid women and families experiencing unplanned pregnancies with such services as parent education classes, care coordination, and transitional housing. Despite this intent, much of the funds are used to further the CPC’s mission of dissuading women from choosing legal abortion. Such tactics often include using a name similar to that of a comprehensive clinic, use of recreational ultrasound, and required viewing of medically inaccurate videos and literature.

NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota supports efforts to improve this program to using accountability, standards, and best practices to ensure that state funds are being efficiently used to provide unbiased health information for women, support for women who have made their own independent choice to continue an unplanned pregnancy, and provide women with the reproductive health care they need to prevent future unplanned pregnancies.

Learn more about CPCs in our state by reading our investigative report: State-Funded Deception: Minnesota's Crisis Pregnancy Centers

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