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UW Election Eye 2012

Campaign 2012 through the eyes of UW faculty and students

February 7, 2012 at 6:34 PM

In Passing: Colorado Springs Pregnancy Center

"In Passing" posts capture shorter snapshots of places and people we encounter on the road. (Photos courtesy of Alex Stonehill, A.V. Crofts and Flickr Creative Commons/UW Election Eye)

COLORADO SPRINGS — The Colorado Spring Pregnancy Center—part of the Life Network—is a small, two-story brick building, positioned conveniently by a bus stop and a Toys “R” Us. Immediately inside is table offering free PediaSure® baby food and crocheted baby caps. The room is largely barren of decoration or pamphlets, except a small printed sign titled “Commitment to Care & Competence.” Two of its bulleted points jumped out at me:

“Clients always receive honest and open answers.”

“We do not offer, recommend or refer for abortions or abortifacients, but are committed to offering accurate information about abortion procedures and risks.”

As I waited for a tour of the facility, the TV played “How to Train Your Dragon” and toddlers played with the few toys on the floor. The glassed-in receptionist fielded questions from visiting women in fluent Spanish and shouted out appointments. Two teenage girls and their babies arrived for parenting classes, a part of a two-year program called Life Steps, offered to those who choose to carry to term.

This sign marks the entrance to the Colorado Spring Pregnancy Center, CO, Feb. 6, 2012. The CSPC offers free pregnancy tests and limited ultrasounds to walk-ins. (Photo by Ilona Idlis/UW Election Eye)

Soon, the CSPC Director, Alice (not her real name), greeted me and took me inside the building’s main hallway. As we walked the length of it, she pointed out the center’s many features: a storage closet full of diapers and baby food, a room bedecked with maternity clothes, and a baby boutique with a ruffled crib. All of these donated items are made available to expecting mothers.

“We have the support of a lot of churches here in town,” Alice explains. Moreover, 93% of Colorado Springs’ high schools welcome CSPC’s educational presentations into their classrooms.

Though the nurse is out for the day, Alice shows me the center’s only medical treatment room. An empty examination table and shrouded ultrasound machine—obtained thanks to Focus on the Family’s Option Ultrasound Program—are situated inside.

As we retreat to one of the center’s multiple counseling rooms to chat, Alice explains that administering ultrasounds is reserved for “abortion-vulnerable” clients. Teenagers automatically fall into that category.

They see pregnancy as the end of their lives, Alice tells me emphatically. The center’s goal is to give them hope by helping the girls see their options.

“I just want what’s best for women. It’s not that I want to choose for them, I just want them to be educated in their choices,” she concludes.

Inside the Colorado Springs Pregnancy Center, CO is a donation-based Baby Boutique, Feb., 2012. Mothers taking the Life Steps parenting classes earn "baby bucks" for purchases there. (Photo by Ilona Idlis/UW Election Eye)

Comments | Topics: abortion, Colorado, Colorado Springs

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