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Expose the Truth: Toolkit on Using State Consumer Protection Laws to Document the Deceptive Practices of Crisis Pregnancy Centers

What are CPCs and How Do They Deceive Women?

Across the country, "crisis pregnancy centers" (CPCs) pretend they want to help women facing an unexpected pregnancy. But that's not the truth. Their real goal is to convince women not to have an abortion. Some honest CPCs explain to women that this is their goal. But many others don't. Instead, they trick women to get them in the center. They often appear to offer abortion and contraception services. They may copy the names of local clinics to appear trustworthy. They might refuse to answer questions on the phone. They may wear white coats and make women fill out official-looking forms. They will often offer free pregnancy tests and even ultrasounds.

But they are not clinics staffed by medical personnel that offer abortion and contraception. Instead, once a woman is in the door, CPCs typically try to shame, confuse, frighten, and coerce her not to have an abortion. These CPCs hand out anti-abortion material. They refuse to tell women about abortion providers. They may force women to watch upsetting anti-abortion videos or slide shows. They even provide false ‘facts' about the safety, availability, and consequences of abortion and birth control.

How CPCs Harm Women

When you ask questions about your health or seek services, you should receive complete, unbiased, and medically accurate answers. Whether you're looking for care, counseling, options or referrals, you deserve the truth. CPCs prevent women from making informed health care decisions and threaten their health. When you are making a decision related to a pregnancy or your reproductive health, time is valuable. Lies and inaccurate facts waste time that you cannot afford.

Expose the Truth By Telling Your Story

Did a so-called "crisis pregnancy center" lie or mislead you about the services it offered, or give you inaccurate information about your options? Did you go to a CPC and feel that something was just not quite right? As you may have experienced, CPCs have been known to try to shame, confuse, frighten, and coerce women — who are already facing a difficult decision — not to have an abortion. CPCs hand out anti-abortion material and refuse to tell women about their options. They may force women to watch upsetting videos or slide shows. They even provide false "facts" about the safety, availability, and consequences of abortion and birth control.

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More Resources on Crisis Pregnancy Centers