Nearly 60 members of the U.S. Congress acted this week to recognize the important work of pregnancy centers with a special decree naming a week in November to honor the centers’ life-saving work.
U.S. Representative Bob Good (VA-05) introduced a resolution Wednesday designating the week of November 8 as National Pregnancy Center Week, emphasizing the vital role that pregnancy resource centers have in helping mothers and families. The legislation is co-sponsored by 40 additional House Republicans. Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) introduced a companion resolution in the Senate, which has 17 co-sponsors.
“Pregnancy centers provide mothers a safe place to turn to as they look for help, hope, and healing during challenging times,” Good said. “These centers and the individuals who work and volunteer at them deserve to be supported and recognized for the vital role they play in helping mothers and their families. I’m proud to stand with leaders like Senator Mike Lee who are working to protect innocent life.”
Lee called the efforts of pregnancy help personnel “heroic” and credited them with saving countless lives.
“Each year, thousands of women and men facing difficult pregnancy situations turn to these centers for help, hope, and healing,” said Lee. “Thanks to the heroic and tireless efforts of their staff and volunteers, parents receive compassionate care and crucial resources that help them to choose life, saving millions of babies’ lives each year. It’s only right that we honor and support their life-affirming work.”
The resolutions recognize how pregnancy help efforts have been in place for 50 years, praising the work of the U.S.’s first pregnancy help network Heartbeat International, as well as that of the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA) and Care Net.
Every woman deserves love and support during an unexpected pregnancy
The legislation references the 2,000 lives saved through Heartbeat’s Abortion Pill Rescue® Network (APRN), Heartbeat’s 24/7 bi-lingual contact center Option Line (OL) and OL having connected with more than 4,000,000 clients, and also mentioned Heartbeat’s hundreds of affiliate maternity homes.
The resolution includes the three pregnancy center networks’ Commitment of Care and Competence as well.
Heartbeat International Senior Director of Communications and Marketing Andrea Trudden acknowledged the value of pregnancy help organizations, noting how the many services they provide are provided to women and families free of charge.
“Every woman deserves love and support during an unexpected pregnancy and for 50 years, Heartbeat International’s network of pregnancy help has provided this compassionate care and real choice,” Trudden said. “Through the work of pregnancy help, women and men receive the compassionate support they need when facing a life-changing decision. They walk alongside families throughout the pregnancy and beyond, blessing them with pregnancy tests, emotional support, ultrasounds, parenting classes, and so much more at no cost.”
Along with designating the week of November 8 as National Pregnancy Center Week, the resolution notes that:
• Nonprofit organizations have been cooperating since November 13, 1971 to save as many lives as possible from abortion;
• There are approximately 2,700 pregnancy centers in the United States;
• Pregnancy centers serve almost 2 million people each year, providing pregnancy tests, ultrasound and medical services, counseling, and education;
• Every day in the United States pregnancy centers assist an average of 5,500 people;
• More than 2,130 medical pregnancy centers provide ultrasound services at little or no cost;
• More than 476,00 ultrasounds are performed at pregnancy centers each year;
• Nearly every pregnancy center care and resource center provides clients with material support for pregnancy and infant care, including clothing, furniture, housing assistance, and nutritional resources.
The the Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI) “Pregnancy Centers Stand the Test of Time” report details the specifics of the hundreds of millions of dollars in essential medical, education and support services provided each year by pregnancy help organizations.
National Pregnancy Center Week will coincide with Heartbeat International’s annual observance honoring pregnancy help organizations, Pregnancy Help Appreciate Week.
As he introduced the National Pregnancy Center Week resolution from the House floor Good said he wanted to “recognize incredible life-giving care saving care provided by pregnancy resource centers across the country.”
“Thanks to the 2,700 pregnancy resource centers in the United States, mothers looking for help, hope and healing have a safe place they can turn to,” Good said.
Good also said the role the centers play in helping mothers and families was “vital.”
No right was more fundamental than the right to life, he said, and the government has no more fundamental a responsibility than to defend the most vulnerable among us.
“Everyone knows abortion is wrong,” stated Good. “The clear science shows us that is the taking of innocent life in the womb. The only question is what priority will we give that unborn precious life in the womb?”
Pregnancy help centers set the standard for true compassion and support
Pro-life leaders praised the resolution.
“We commend Senator Lee and Representative Good for highlighting the vital contributions of the network of more than 2,700 pro-life pregnancy centers across our country,” said Susan B Anthony List VP of Government Affairs Marilyn Musgrave. “Groups like Care Net, Heartbeat International, NIFLA, and others, with their multitude of dedicated volunteers, make a powerful positive impact in the lives of millions of women and families – giving them the courage and support they need to choose life.”
“Their heroic service is an area where all Americans, whether or not they consider themselves pro-life, can find common ground,” she added, issuing a challenge for Congress to do more. “We hope the whole Congress will join us in taking concrete steps to recognize how the pregnancy care center movement continues to stand the test of time.”
Mary Szoch, Director of the Center for Human Dignity, Family Research Council, also lauded the work of pregnancy help organizations and the resolution.
“Each year, thousands of women find themselves unexpectedly pregnant with no one to turn to,” she said. “Pregnancy resource centers (PRC) provide vital support for these women offering free ultrasounds, STD testing, parenting classes, post-abortion support, diapers, baby clothes, and most importantly a loving, listening friend.”
“From the moment a woman enters a PRC, she is surrounded with compassion, support, and care,” Szoch continued. “The work of these centers changes the lives of many women and saves the lives of countless children. Family Research Council is proud to support PRCs across the country and is grateful to Rep. Good for his resolution calling for national recognition of this heroic work.”
Jeanne Mancini, President of March for Life, was complimentary of pregnancy centers as well.
“Pregnancy Care Centers are the heart and the soul of the pro-life movement, as they are dedicated to supporting women and creating nourishing environments in which families can thrive,” Mancini said. “They exist to provide women who feel broken and desperate with a place to turn to in their hour of need. Thank you to Rep. Bob Good and Sen. Mike Lee for highlighting this life-saving work.”
Trudden underscored the important contribution pregnancy help organizations make to society.
“Pregnancy help centers set the standard for true compassion and support so that no woman feels alone, coerced, or so hopeless that she ends her child’s life through abortion,” Trudden said. “Pregnancy help organizations should be commended for the selfless care they provide to their communities and the generations of families they strengthen.”
“Strong families create strong communities,” added Trudden. “Thank you to Representative Good and Senator Lee for recognizing the great work of pregnancy help.”
The full list of 17 Senate co-sponsors of the resolution recognizing pregnancy help centers includes: Sens. Thom Tillis (R-NC), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Steve Daines (R-MT), James Risch (R-ID), Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Rick Scott (FL), Roger Marshall (R-KS), Josh Hawley (R-MO), Joni Ernst (R-IA), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), James Lankford (R-OK), Mike Braun (R-ID), and Chuck Grassley (R-IA).
The 40 co-sponsors of the resolution in the House include: Reps Hartzler (R-MO), Hice (R-GA), Aderholt (R-AL), Harris (R-MD), Banks (R-IN), LaMalfa (R-CA), Smith (R-MO), Jackson (R-TX), Westerman (R-AK), Latta (R-OH), Wagner (R-MO), Babin (R-TX), Herrell (R-NM), Gosar (R-AZ), McKinley (R-WV), Wittman (R-VA), Hinson (R-IA), Bishop (R-NC), Duncan (R-SC), Mooney (R-WV), Boebert (R-CO), Miller (R-IL), Rosendale (R-MT), Norman (R-SC), Weber (R-TX) , Fulcher (R-ID), Bilirakis (R-FL), Budd (R-NC), Joyce (R-PA), Feenstra (R-IA), Taylor Greene (R-GA), Moore (R-AL), Crawford (R-AR), Gohmert (R-TX), Cawthorn (R-NC), Griffith (R-VA), Hern (R-OK), Grothman (R-WI), Fischbach (R-MN), Lamborn (R-CO)