Massachusetts Fake Clinic Deletes Deceptive Claims From Website After Legal Complaint

By: Amy Littlefield, Rewire, December 5, 2017

A crisis pregnancy center in Massachusetts has scrubbed misleading claims from its website after a Rewire report prompted a legal complaint accusing the anti-choice center of masquerading as an abortion clinic.

The website for Attleboro Women’s Health Center still offers appointments to “discuss the abortion methods that may be available to you,” along with detailed information about the costs and steps involved in abortion procedures. All of this still appears designed to obscure the fact that Attleboro Women’s Health Center is a fake clinic, whose purpose is to deter patients from seeking abortion care.

After Rewire exposed the fake clinic’s deceptive website, prompting a consumer watchdog to file a complaint with Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, the center made some edits.

Katie O’Connor, legal counsel with the Campaign for Accountability, noticed the edits last week after she filed the complaint against the center last month.

“I do think they changed sort of the most egregious things that they had put on their website, but I still think it’s totally inadequate,” O’Connor told Rewire in an interview.

O’Connor called for more clarity surrounding the relationship between Attleboro Women’s Health Center and Abundant Hope Pregnancy Resource Center, a self-described “Christian pro-life ministry” and affiliate of Heartbeat International, which describes itself as the world’s largest network of crisis pregnancy centers. Attleboro Women’s Health Center shares an address with Abundant Hope, and the health center’s website is registered to Darlene Howard, Abundant Hope’s executive director. In an interview with Rewire Monday, Howard said the entities are “two separate divisions” that “are under the same organization.”

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