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Anti-Abortion Centers in New Jersey

Anti-abortion centers (also called AACs or "crisis pregnancy centers") are fake health clinics that dissuade pregnant people from seeking abortion services.

Everyone deserves to make informed decisions about their health and access the health care they need, without judgment, shame, or coercion.

New Jersey remains a leader in safeguarding reproductive rights and health care services. However, roughly 59 AACs operate throughout New Jersey. These organizations dissuade people from making fully informed decisions about their health, as they shame their clients and provide inaccurate information that could, instead, risk their health further.

LEARN MORE ABOUT ANTI-ABORTION CENTERS

What are anti-abortion clinics? What do they do?

Anti-abortion centers (also called AACs, crisis pregnancy centers, or "fake clinics") are clinics or mobile vans that look like real health centers, but they're run by anti-abortion activists who have a shady, harmful agenda: to scare, shame, or pressure you out of getting an abortion, and to tell lies about abortion, birth control, and sexual health. 

Anti-abortion centers don’t provide abortion or offer a full range of health care, and they won’t give you honest facts about sexual health and your pregnancy options — their goal is to spread misinformation and propaganda.  

Most anti-abortion centers aren’t legitimate medical clinics, so they don’t have to follow HIPAA and keep your information private, like most real health care providers do. These centers could even give your information to other anti-abortion organizations or use it to harass you.

Looking for a trustworthy abortion clinic or health center in your area? Call your local Planned Parenthood, or visit AbortionFinder.org.

How can I tell the difference between an AAC and a real health care provider?

AACs usually advertise free pregnancy tests and pregnancy counseling, and some may claim they have other services like STD testing — but these centers don’t actually provide most kinds of health care, and the information they give isn’t always accurate or trustworthy. For example, they may say your pregnancy is earlier or later than it really is, to confuse you about how much time you have to get an abortion if you want one.

There are a LOT of these AACs in New Jersey (59, to be exact). Websites like exposefakeclinics.comcrisispregnancycentermap.com, and The Fake Clinic Database can help you figure out which clinics in your area are crisis pregnancy centers. 

Here are some signs that a clinic might be an anti-abortion center:

  • It’s listed online or on map apps as a pregnancy resource center, pregnancy help center, pregnancy care center, women’s resource center, or abortion alternatives.

  • They advertise free pregnancy tests, abortion counseling, pre-abortion screenings, abortion education, post-abortion care, or after-abortion help — but they refuse to help you get an abortion.

  • They advertise “abortion pill reversal” or say you can “reverse” an abortion. (This isn’t true — you can’t reverse an abortion.)

  • They say abortion is unsafe, or that it leads to cancer, infertility, or mental health problems. (This isn’t true — abortion is one of the safest medical procedures. ​The rate of major complications is less than 1%, and it's safer than getting your wisdom teeth taken out. Abortion also doesn’t increase your risk for cancer, infertility, or mental health problems.)

  • They say negative things about abortion, birth control, condoms, or sex.

  • They don’t provide condoms or other effective birth control methods like the pillpatchringshotIUD, or implant — if they do offer birth control services, it’s usually only the fertility awareness method.

  • They try to pressure you into continuing a pregnancy, or placing your future baby for adoption.

  • They try to talk about religion even when you don't want to.

  • They say judgmental things about sex before marriage, single parenting, LGBTQ+ people, or people of color.

  • They offer items like clothes, diapers, and bottles, but you have to go to lectures and workshops from the AAC to “earn” them.

One of the easiest ways to find out if a clinic is an AAC is to look at their website for some of the warning signs listed above. You can also call and ask about their services — if they say they don’t provide abortion or effective birth control methods like condoms or the pill, and they won’t help you find a clinic that does, it’s probably not a real health center. If they’re not clear about their services or pressure you to come to the clinic in person, that’s also a huge red flag.

Trust your gut: if something seems fishy, it probably is. And if you ever feel uncomfortable at a clinic, you have the right to leave at any time.

Real health centers are open and upfront about their services. They’ll help you get the care you need, and they don’t pressure you to make certain decisions about sex, birth control, or pregnancy. Real health centers give you honest facts about all of your options — without scare tactics, shame, or judgement — so you can decide for yourself what’s right for you. 

You can always trust Planned Parenthood health centers for truthful, nonjudgmental care and support around all of your sexual and reproductive health needs, including abortionbirth controlSTD testing and treatmentpregnancy testing, and more.

What are the major public health concerns regarding AACs?

STI Testing Services

One of the major concerns surrounding STI testing at AACs is the lack of standardized reporting and transparency.

As AACs have expanded their advertised services to include STI testing, questions remain regarding the accuracy of their testing methods, the reliability of their results, and the potential implications for public health. Among the centers with web presences in NJ, 21 (39%) mentioned STI information and/or testing at their centers on prominently their website.

These organizations are not licensed by the Department of Health, and are not subject to reporting requirements or HIPAA compliance.

Providing medically inaccurate information and use deceptive tactics to influence people’s decisions.

Anti-abortion centers usually try really hard to seem like a normal doctor’s office. They might have ultrasound machines, staff in white coats, medical-sounding names, and professional websites. They also often post signs near or are located very close to real health centers like Planned Parenthood. They do all of this to try to trick you into coming to an AAC instead, so they can pressure you into making certain decisions about sex and pregnancy.

In reality, they provide medically inaccurate information and use deceptive tactics to influence people’s decisions.

These organizations dissuade people from making fully informed decisions about their health, as they shame their clients and provide inaccurate information that could, instead, risk their health further.

HERE'S WHAT YOU CAN DO:

Read Full Report

PPAFNJ has composed a research report on anti-abortion centers, also known as crisis pregnancy centers, in New Jersey. Click below to read the full report.

Do you have direct experience with an anti-abortion center?

PPAFNJ and partners want to hear from you. Click below to take a short survey about your experience with an anti-abortion center.

Do you know of an anti-abortion center in your community?

PPAFNJ and our partners want to hear from you! Your answers to this survey will contribute to an analysis of the state of anti-abortion centers in New Jersey.

Looking for a trustworthy abortion clinic or health center in your area?

Call your local Planned Parenthood, or visit AbortionFinder.org.

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