Catholics upset over new Planned Parenthood facility Uptown

Published: May. 1, 2013 at 2:11 AM CDT|Updated: Jun. 29, 2016 at 8:56 PM CDT
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Plans for a new Planned Parenthood facility where doctors would perform abortions have some people furious. It's slated to be built on South Claiborne Avenue near Napoleon. But the idea is causing major concern within the Catholic community.

By next year, the empty lot on South Claiborne Avenue near Napoleon, will house a Planned Parenthood clinic. LaToya Cantrell, the city councilwoman who oversees District B, proudly made the announcement about the clinic and another health facility, at her state of the district address Tuesday night.

"When I tell you the rates of HIV and transmissions, it's serious that's why I'm so pleased to welcome the South Broad Community health clinic that is coming to Broadmoor in a few weeks and also the Planned Parenthood health facility that will be coming to Claiborne Avenue," Cantrell said.

In addition to performing abortions, Cantrell says the clinic will also educate women about safe sex, and women's health issues. There's already a Planned Parenthood on Magazine Street, but the new facility will be much larger.

District B resident Felicia Kahn comments, "The services that they give at this point in that small little building, really help so many people and they'll be able to expand their services."

Not everyone is on board with the plan. Dorinda Bordlee is a member of the Nola Needs Peace Coalition...formed last year by community members who oppose Planned Parenthood's new clinic. Bordlee says, "Louisiana is a culture that loves life and we don't need a Texas based Planned Parenthood coming into our state and our city possibly doubling our abortion rate."

The coalition is trying to educate New Orleans residents about what they say Planned Parenthood is all about. Benjamin Clapper explains, "Our information is being given out through churches, through the mail, through door walking campaigns that we'll have in the neighborhood of the Planned Parenthood facility through billboards and other means."

The Archdiocese of New Orleans has given the coalition their blessing...allowing them to hand out fliers at churches across the region this past Sunday. "The Archbishop as we know, has lead the effort in our city to build a peaceful future, from everything dealing with racism, violence and murder in our city, he's been the leader and he sees this just part in parcel of that campaign," said Clapper.

Although reaction from the community may be mixed, plans for the new clinic move forward. LaToya Cantell says it should open by 2014.