BOSTON (Reuters) - Planned Parenthood will retrain staff in all clinics on reporting risks to minors’ welfare and tighten disciplinary action to terminate staff in any confirmed instances where policies are not followed, the organization said on Tuesday.
The retraining efforts, beginning immediately through April 1, are for “anyone who has direct patient contact” and reassert Planned Parenthood’s commitment to women’s health care and protecting young people, said spokesman Stuart Schear.
The announcement comes as anti-abortion group Live Action on Tuesday released another undercover video it said shows the health services provider aiding and abetting sexual exploitation of minors.
In the video, filmed at a New York City clinic, two individuals tell clinic employees that they are involved in sex work and ask questions about documentation, making appointments, insurance and guardianship requirements for services for teenage girls who do not speak fluent English.
Planned Parenthood responded to the latest release saying the conversation as portrayed is not accurate and defended the actions of its employees.
“Unlike other publicized tapes, the hoax patients in New York were not able to get beyond the reception desk for private consultation,” said a statement from Planned Parenthood of New York City.
“Like other encounters that have been recently publicized in Virginia, our staff responded professionally to questions, discussed these encounters with management, and provided a report to the FBI,” the group said.
Live Action president Lila Rose has said she is making full footage and transcripts of the encounter available to New York law enforcement and the state’s attorney general.
“This footage shows that underage girls and young women are at potentially grave risk when they walk into Planned Parenthood clinics,” Rose said.
Previously released footage from Live Action included videos from clinics in New Jersey and Virginia.
Planned Parenthood said it had already reported a string of suspicious visits that occurred during the same week in January in at least 12 centers in six states to local and national authorities and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.
The group fired the New Jersey clinic employee captured on video for her behavior.