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When the Assault on Planned Parenthood Becomes Personal

When the Assault on Planned Parenthood Becomes Personal
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My relationship with Planned Parenthood is personal. When I was 19, I was in an abusive relationship and when I found out I was pregnant, Planned Parenthood was there for me. I credit the organization with saving my life. They provided me with all of the information I needed to make an informed decision. I am not ashamed or embarrassed; I am simply grateful that I had a choice and a place to turn.

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Comments

Janis  

Thank you so very much for putting all of my enraged, incoherent thoughts about this matter into words.

03/11/2011
valkyrie256  

Hello TinaV,

Planned Parenthood was initially organized to provide the social services as you so eloquently write about in you article.

I am a retired interim manager, executive director, CEO, what ever the Non-profit calls their top manager reporting to the Board of Directors. I go into organizations that have strayed from their mission and there board feels that bringing in someone new from the non-profit executive pool will be replacing the failed manager with a manager that thinks just like the failed manager.

Very large and very small non-profits that are very well funded often times have a board that relies on the executive manager that reports to the board who does not perform his duties to the board, the organization members, and the volunteers. In other words, they don't manage and monitor their organization.

I have not made a case study of the Planned Parenthood failure to focus on their mission in New York City nor read any more than that which is available to you for your own information. The fact that what happened was a gross failing of Planned Parenthood management all the way to the top cannot be denied.

People often have their own idea of how to fulfill an organization's mission and get it wrong or very wrong. Strong management helps to prevent this and it is difficult to find strong management to work at non-profit pay levels. I certainly have no fortune amassed from my work.

You have every right to be angry and hurt. I offer you this to consider. Find the board of Planned Parenthood. Each member is listed on their income tax Form-990, as required by law.

The Form-990 can be found at a city library, usually the central library. The librarians are always thrilled, literally, to be able to use their expertise to help anyone find what they are looking for. Form-990's can be found online. I don't have the url but google it and you will easily find it for the TAX Year 2009 possibly even 2010 if the Chief Financial Officer is OCD.

Write to these people and express your outrage at their apparent mismanagement of Planned Parenthood by having an executive management team that failed to maintain the focus of the organization on their mission and failed to manage the organization ethically and insure ethics training is a training focus of any organization and it is especially important for a non-profits.

Write about this and tell everyone you know in your various circles of friends and acquaintances to write the board.

Politicians will work their own agendas and right now fighting that s most probably futile.

Make sure planned Parenthood or its successor has a strong board. You can most easily do that by writing to all of the large contributors and tell them you insist on strong ethical management. You can make a difference here. Twenty years ago one call, positive or negative, was the equivalent of 20,000 people with your same point of view. Large contributors will listen.

You are an inquisitive person by nature or you could not be successful as a writer and this article bears out this point. Become a corporate watchdog of Planned Parenthood or its successor. Request a copy of the annual report and find the Form-990 each year. Study these documents. If you don't see something you consider to be a major component of any nonprofit, write them. Don't like the answer or don't get a reply, then enlist others.

Your article is compelling and a sad commentary on parenthood in many areas no matter what the income level.

You are angry but I sense you are heartbroken for the girls and women who may be affected by the board of directors' and executive management's failure to properly manage Planned Parenthood. In this case, Congress has become the vice-principal, the disciplinarian of a failed organization management team.

I ask you to look beyond the politics because they will change, deals will be cut. The federal government may reduce or eliminate funding. To soon to tell. Planned Parenthood's board and executive management should be just as visible as the House of Representatives for its failure to manage contributions wisely. Remember every dollar spent is a contribution, even the government's dollar.

The board of directors of Planned Parenthood failed their responsibilities to the contributors and the communities and clients they served.

03/11/2011

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