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August 18, 1999
New Project to Expose Abortion Clinic Deception
Springfield, IL — State attorney generals may soon be prosecuting abortion clinics for deceptive business practices, if the Elliot Institute has it’s way. Working with individuals and organizations around the country, this post-abortion research and education group is spearheading this effort to collect complaints against abortion clinics from women who were not given complete and accurate information about abortion’s risks. The project is called EDAP, (pronounced ” ee´dap”) an acronym for Expose Deceptive Abortion Practices.
“The goal of EDAP is to prove to state attorney generals what we already know to be true — that the abortion industry is willfully deceiving women about the dangers of abortion,” said David Reardon, Ph.D., director of the Elliot Institute. “No business, least of all a medical practice, is legally allowed to mislead customers. But this is exactly what the abortion industry is doing. Women who are not fully informed about risks or alternatives are being deceived. Women who are promised that abortion will solve their problems are being lied to. It’s the attorney generals’ duty to put a stop to this.”
Reardon pointed out that the Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act and other laws requiring honesty and fair dealing in businesses transactions are already in place to help protect consumers, but are simply not being applied against the politically-protected abortion industry. “Abortion clinics sell abortion just like a consumer product,” he said. “Therefore, they are subject to both private lawsuits and prosecution by the state under existing consumer protection laws. Any false promise, misrepresentation, concealment, or omission of material fact is against the law. Even if this deception is not deliberate, the people operating the clinic are subject to prosecution for misleading women.”
EDAP is an effort to collect complaints from women who feel they were deceived by abortion clinics. It is not necessary for them to prove any other injury. When enough complaints in an individual state have been collected, these will be presented to the state attorney general with the request that his or her office launch an official investigation of that state’s abortion clinics.
The Elliot Institute has prepared a brochure describing the project which includes a survey to collect preliminary information about what information was denied to each woman. Women who fill out the surveys may later be asked to make a formal complaint to the attorney general, which can be done anonymously if they wish.
“When we have lined up a hundred or more complaints in each state, we will work with groups in that state to coordinate a flood of complaints to their attorney general’s office,” Reardon said. “This will be followed by press conferences and other measures intended to push the attorney general to aggressively defend the rights of the women who are being deceived and injured by the abortion industry.”
“This is a chance for women to stand up and be heard,” he added. “Only they can ensure that other women are not victims of the same deceit.”
Information on EDAP and a free, reproducible copy of the brochure is available on the Elliot Institute web site at www.afterabortion.org, or write: Elliot Institute, PO Box 7348, Springfield, IL 62791. Groups interested in serving as state collection sites should call the Elliot Institute at (217) 525-8202.
Interview questions should be directed to Amy Sobie or David Reardon at: (217) 525-8202.