Planned Parenthood Apologizes for Its Handling of 'Offensive Call'

By Susan Jones | July 7, 2008 | 8:24 PM EDT

( - Planned Parenthood of Idaho has apologized for an incident in which one of its employees assured a caller that his donation could be used to abort black babies, the Idaho Statesman reported.

"A fundraising employee violated the organization's principles and practices when she appeared to be willing to accept a racially motivated donation," Planned Parenthood of Idaho CEO Rebecca Poedy said in a written statement to the Statesman. "We apologize for the manner in which this offensive call was handled. We take full responsibility for the actions of the fundraising staff member who created the impression that racism of any form would be tolerated at Planned Parenthood," Poedy said.

"We took swift action to ensure that each of our employees understands their responsibility to communicate clearly with donors about the fact that we believe in helping all individuals, regardless of gender, race, or sexual orientation, make informed decisions about their reproductive health care."

Cybercast News Service reported last month on a telephone conversations taped by a student pro-life publication, The Advocate, at the University of California-Los Angeles.

James O' Keefe, a first-year law student and an advisor for the The Advocate, called Planned Parenthood of Ohio, posing as a potential donor.He said he wanted to make a donation, and he asked if the money could be used to underwrite abortions for minorities.

The Planned Parenthood employee responded, "If you specifically want to underwrite it for a minority person, you can target it that way. You can specify that that's how you want it spent."

O'Keefe responded, "Okay, yeah, because there's definitely way too may black people in Ohio. So, I'm just trying to do my part."

O' Keefe explained that part of his motivation for placing the call was to fight the racism he perceives in Planned Parenthood.

The Advocate told Cybercast News Service that O'Keefe placed this call on July 10, 2007. Lisa Perks, CEO of Planned Parenthood of Central Ohio, confirmed that such a call did take place in summer 2007.

"It was a violation of any policy, and it's very upsetting," Perks told Cybercast News Service last month. "Planned Parenthood has a long history of social justice."

See Earlier Story"
Planned Parenthood Agreed to Accept Race-Motivated Donations (28 Feb. 2008)

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