Sex Trafficking and Clinic Responsibility: What Would You Do?

3 Feb

If you were an employee at a reproductive health care clinic and someone came in and asked you about obtaining abortions for women being sex trafficked, what would you do?

Here’s what I would do: Lie. Lie, lie, and then lie some more.


There’s one thing for certain: If you tell the person “No, we will not give these women healthcare” then you will never be able to find them. You will never be able to help them get out of being trafficked, help them get their lives back.

And if you tell this person “That’s against the law! I’m calling the cops!”- then you might just lose your life.

Everyone knows that in a bank robbery, you’re supposed to do whatever the bank robber tells you. The bank robber doesn’t care about the law or your life, (s)he just wants the money and to escape. Doing anything to prevent that puts you in danger.

The same thing applies with someone who trafficks people. This person abuses women for their bodies- (s)he’s not interested in your morals or the law.

The BEST way to ensure those trafficked girls are found? Lie. Tell the person that you can provide the girls with healthcare services, that you wont tell anyone, that its all perfectly legal. And then after the meeting, go tell your superiors and the law enforcement. When the person comes again with the women (s)he is trafficking, law enforcement can be there to arrest the person. The girls can be provided with healthcare (which they will need), counseling, a place to stay, etc. Dare I sound too forward- they can be rescued.

Of course, if the person coming in to ask about healthcare for sex trafficked women is really just a fake undercover anti-choicer, this type of situation may lead the employee and the clinic to look bad.

But personally, I’d rather look bad and rescue women from sex trafficking than look good and never have the chance to save them. Being a reproductive justice activist isn’t about looking good, it’s about helping other people.

What would you do in this type of situation?

14 Responses to “Sex Trafficking and Clinic Responsibility: What Would You Do?”

  1. Kevin Terry February 4, 2011 at 3:09 am #

    Are you seriously trying to defend Ms. Woodruff? Seriously? Do you think she was trying to do what you describe here? Did she look fearful? Did she report these people to her superiors and/or the authorities? No she didn’t. I’m Pro-Life, but I’m not a fanatic, and while I do think abortion is wrong and flat out evil I don’t think the women are evil. I just think they are at a different point in their lives. Bottom line….you just make yourself and your cause look bad when you try and defend her actions. That would be like me trying to defend a crazy murderer for bombing an abortion clinic and/or killing an abortion doctor. Any way you look at those actions, just like the actions of Ms. Woodruff, they are wrong. May avid Bless us all. Regardless of our differences we are all one family.

  2. ProChoiceGal February 4, 2011 at 11:46 am #


    for what its worth, the faux sex trafficking incidents *were* reported.

    I don’t want to defend Woodruff’s actions, but I am also hesitant to take a stance against her. The fact is, that video was *very* heavily edited. When a video is edited to such an extreme, that means that the people who created the video are only showing you what they want you to see. What do you think Live Action wants us to see? Only the parts that demonize her. We don’t know what kind of background story Woodruff got.

    The truth is is that we have no idea what *really* went on, because Live Action doesn’t want to show us what went on. Regardless, if Woodruff is in the wrong, that does not mean that PP is in the wrong. Live Action visited *many* clinics and came up with, what, two videos? If I came up with a video that showed a dentist saying/doing some horrible stuff, would that be enough to close all dentist’s offices in America? Of course not.

    If Live Action actually gave a crap about victims of sex trafficking, maybe they’d do something to prevent it. You know, like donating some of that money that have (they’re rolling in it) to organizations that help prevent trafficking. Instead, they chose to exploit the situation because they have something against women receiving medical care.

  3. Lyahdan February 4, 2011 at 12:49 pm #

    1. Kevin, did you even read the article where it says that the actions in the video are against PP policy? The second video released shows the not so shocking actions of someone following policy and giving simply factual information (and yet, somehow, that’s still bad and shocking to the Lila Rose’s of the world).

    2. False equivalence much? Lying to keep pumping a pimp for information is not even close to defending murder, not even a little bit.

    3. You are correct though in that we shouldn’t support the lying going on in that video, or we’re no better than the folks staffing CPCs who lie to women seeking abortions. (see…those are actually equivalent) As I said, the second released video is a far better model to follow–give correct information, then report the strange guy as soon as he’s gone.

  4. Steph L February 4, 2011 at 2:54 pm #

    Plot To Undermine Planned Parenthood Fails

  5. Lauren February 4, 2011 at 3:38 pm #

    The great thing about the law is that it is not dependant upon our subjective reasoning. So while it is fun to play the WHAT WOULD YOU DO game there is an actual mandate of what this worker SHOULD HAVE DONE. And that mandate requires her to “immediately notify the state registry DIRECTLY.” So while Planned Parenthood may try to lead people to believe that they did the right thing by “supposedly” reporting to management who reported it to the Feds… holding the information, waiting til later to report or reporting to higher ups within Planned Parenthood – IS NOT THE LAW, at least not in New Jersey.

    Additionally – there are unedited versions of the tape available. Still the same old crime. So the editting argument doesn’t hold any weight.

  6. Mary Ann February 4, 2011 at 4:06 pm #

    I’m so sick of the lame whine about heavily edited videos.
    Live Action has released full videos, it took me less than a minute to find them when I searched.
    Defending PP is looking more and more ridiculous.

    “They did all they could”
    Then why fire a clinic manager?

    “They help so much with other services”
    That makes sending underage prostitutes back to their pimps for more forced rape ok?

    “The videos are heavily edited”
    Have you watched the full editions that have been released, easily accessedre0 by anyone?

    “Yeah, but these are anti-abortion people looking to take down PP”
    So? The tapes speak for themselves. Is your loyalty to PP more important than shedding light on sex slavery and working to end it?

    It’s like all of the sudden institutional cover up of the abuse of minors couldn’t be a problem. Why not? It sure was when men in priest collars were involved. Guess victims of other people don’t matter so much.

  7. KushielsMoon February 4, 2011 at 5:35 pm #

    This is not a post to defend anyone or anything. It is a question: What would you do, with one possible answer (what I would do). I ask you, now, what would you do?

  8. ProChoiceGal February 4, 2011 at 7:28 pm #

    Live action caught screwing with the audio in the videos: enjoy 😉

  9. Steph L February 6, 2011 at 6:37 pm #

    I’m so sick of the lame attempts to smear Planned Parenthood.

  10. Andrew Ensley February 7, 2011 at 12:27 pm #

    If Ms. Woodruff handled the situation so expertly, why did Planned Parenthood fire her? Why did VP of Communications call her actions a “total breakdown in judgment” on national TV?

    This isn’t a judgment call. The laws are quite clear on what clinic staff are REQUIRED to do. Report any suspicious activity – especially involving minors – IMMEDIATELY.

    Here’s a perfectly reasonable scenario:

    1) Criminal admits he is a criminal.
    2) Clinic worker finds ANY excuse to leave the room for just a second. “Let me go find that paperwork…”
    3) Clinic worker tells another employee, “Call 911 immediately. There’s a child sex trafficker in the other room!”
    4) Go back and act like everything’s fine. Try to stall criminal until the police can arrive.

    Would that have been so hard? Instead, in all FIVE videos released, the clinic workers provide legal information that would be very valuable to these “sex workers” in their efforts to hide their activities from the law. On top of that, they did nothing to notify local law enforcement.

    Clearly no concern for the poor girls was shown in ANY way.

  11. Steph L February 7, 2011 at 8:50 pm #

    “On top of that, they did nothing to notify local law enforcement.”

    Nope, wrong.

  12. Andrew Ensley February 7, 2011 at 9:14 pm #

    ‘”On top of that, they did nothing to notify local law enforcement.”

    Nope, wrong.’

    Care to expand on that?

    I guess I will…

    Planned Parenthood admitted themselves that the only reports were to supervisors and higher staff within PP initially. Then, on January 18th, FIVE FULL DAYS after the last video, they wrote a letter to the attorney general and asked for an FBI investigation.

    There is no record of anyone notifying local law enforcement.

  13. Debate blog-Julio September 2, 2011 at 4:40 am #

    The truth is that if I see abortion as a health problem, would not have offense, but if I see it as a business that needs to be done to support another, I think so. Conspiracy.
    if people posing as pimps to get an abortion is that they are missing a state and under the law. This is another problem.


  1. Tweets that mention Sex Trafficking and Clinic Responsibility: What Would You Do? | Abortion Gang -- - February 3, 2011

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Christian Prochoicer, The Abortion Gang. The Abortion Gang said: new post: Sex Trafficking and Clinic Responsibility: What Would You Do? #prochoice […]

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