By Isabel Barbera
Hundreds of Planned Parenthood advocates flocked to Pasadena City Hall on Saturday, September 19 from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. to rally in response to an anti-abortion protest in the area three weeks prior. The gathering occurred the day after the House of Representatives voted 241-187 to defund the program.
During the first half of the hour-long event, local supporters and youth activists spoke of the importance of Planned Parenthood. They voiced their frustration with the recent allegations against Planned Parenthood – specifically, the series of videos produced by the Center for Medical Progress. In addition, All Saints Church members Reverend Susan Russell and Church Rector J. Edwin Bacon addressed the religiously backed attacks on the organization.
“It is our responsibility to stand up when the core American value of religious liberty is hijacked as a weapon of mass disinformation in a campaign to undermine a woman’s constitutional right to make choices about reproductive health care,” Russell said.
Speakers also included the President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley Sheri Bonner, Pasadena Mayor Terry Tornek, and Congresswoman Judy Chu.
The supporters wrapped up the event with a march down Colorado Boulevard.
“It was energizing to see high school students stand alongside veterans of the movement, all with the purpose of supporting each other and the right of all people to receive honest information and high-quality health care,” Vice President of External Affairs for Planned Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley Julianne Hines said.