The Baltimore City Council passed legislation this week, entitled the Limited-Service Pregnancy Centers Disclaimer Bill, that will require crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) to disclose that they do not provide information or referrals for certain services. According to NARAL Pro-Choice Maryland, the bill "requires Limited Service Pregnancy Centers, also known as Crisis Pregnancy Centers (CPCs), to post a sign clearly communicating that the facility does not provide or refer for abortion or birth control services." The vote was the first of three required for the bill to become law.
Today there are an estimated 2,593 CPCs nationwide. Most fake clinics are affiliated with one or more national umbrella organizations. Jenny Blasdell, Executive Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Maryland, wrote on RH Reality Check: "The measure does not ask CPCs to provide services they find objectionable. It only asks them to be honest and straightforward with the women, so that they know up front whether the facility will suit their needs. Having a more complete picture about the services that are and are not offered will also help provide a context for information they do receive."
This particular legislation only pertains to CPCs in Baltimore City and is the first in the country developed to create a standard requirement for information disclosure.
Media Resources: RH Reality Check 10/7/09; NARAL Pro-Choice Maryland; FeministCampus.org