Investigate Your Health Center
With few exceptions, school health centers are abortion referral centers. If they send girls to an off-site location, the school health center often serves as a “Make it Go Away” remedy for vulnerable young high school women. What about the other options that constitute a woman’s “choice”? Most high schools are sorely lacking accessible pregnancy support for students, and even less have adoption referral services.
Step 1: Gather Information
Brainstorm how you want to target your investigation by asking yourself these questions:
- Does your school health center have a relationship with the local Planned Parenthood? If so, what about the local PRC?
- What kind of sexual agenda do they push on students?
- Do they talk about the possibility of pregnancy?
- Do they have pregnancy counseling? Do they have any pregnancy support?
- Do they have adoption referral services?
- And finally, what do they tell girls in counseling sessions?
Step 2: Investigate
1. Call the health center and student administration and ask questions. Research the health center’s website—see if pregnancy or abortion are mentioned. See what resources it offers. Ask if they provide any kind of pregnancy program.
2. You will get to a point where they will only give so many answers. Then you need to find things out for yourself.
3. One way to do this is to go into your counseling center and say you need to be counseled for pregnancy. Act scared and emotional. Give them your real name and student ID. Once your counseling appointment is arranged, go in following the “recording” steps.
4. Refuse to take the pregnancy test; say you want to talk first. Say you took two pregnancy steps already. Spend the time asking the health counselor about pregnancy. Say you just found out you are pregnant and you need to talk to someone.
5. Be sure to ask lots of questions: Here is a sample of the questions you should ask:
• “What should I do?”
• “What are my options?”
• “Do you have pregnancy resources for me?”
• “Where can I get an abortion?”
• “What do you think about pregnancy in high school?”
• “What do you think about abortion?”
Step 3: Record
Use a video camera ($100-$500) or an audio recorder ($25-$50). Check the legality for your state to make sure it is ok to record another person without their consent. You can look that up here. Keep the camera or recorder hidden in a bag, purse, or pocket. Make sure it has enough battery and is turned on before you start!
Step 4: Report
Be sure to report the results of your investigation. Some mediums you can use:
• Press release
• Personally call radio stations/local news media and tip them.
• Student newspaper
• Your newspaper
• Of course, word of mouth.
Step 5: Put on the Pressure
• Put pressure on the administration by making flyers and passing them out around campus.
• Send school donors letters about what your school is advocating in terms of abortion and pregnancy.
• Your investigation will earn you media, and media will put pressure on the admin and get resources for your students.
• Host a FFL Pregnancy Resource Forum to try to fix the problems.