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Illinois Federation

For Right to Life

Daily News

Thursday, October 09, 2008

While Political Abortion Rhetoric Picks at Tender Wounds, a New Outreach Offers Hope

New York Subway Ads to Reach Millions Struggling After Abortion


According to the Alan Guttmacher Institute, approximately 1 out of 3 women in the United States will have had an abortion by age 45. It's fair to say that the majority of Americans have either had an abortion or know someone who has experienced one.


As the election cycle heats up, so does the political rhetoric surrounding abortion. Labels, judgment, and debate may bring up a range of emotions for the millions of men, women, family members and friends touched by abortion. One new outreach is taking a different approach.


"The political language surrounding abortion can pick at tender wounds," says Michaelene Fredenburg, author of Changed: Making Sense of Your Own or a Loved One's Abortion Experience, "It can be an extremely difficult time for someone like myself who has been there."


Fredenburg created the Abortion Changes You outreach as a safe place away from politics, labels and debate to meet the needs of men and women who have shared their abortion stories, and their frustration with the cultural climate, with her. "One young man named Zach told me 'I can't talk to those who are liberal because abortion is supposed to be okay. And the people on the Right are scary.'" says Fredenburg, "I kept thinking, what is there for people like Zach?"


Eye-catching transit ads will appear today throughout the New York City subway system. The ads were unveiled last month at Fordham University. Recognizing that the New York City population largely uses mass transit for transportation, Fredenburg hopes these ads will resonate with those who have been touched by abortion - either their own or that of someone close to them.


The Abortion Changes You national outreach is an invitation for men, women, grandparents, siblings, other family members and friends to know that they are not alone and that healing resources are available. The 22-inch subway placards feature images of men and women and their "voices", inspired by real, personal abortion experiences. An Asian female shares, "I thought life would be the way it was before," while a tattooed male inspired by Zach says, "I often wonder if there was something I could have done to help her."


One thousand subway cards featuring these voices will run for four weeks beginning October 9, 2008 and will direct people to the Abortion Changes You Web site. On visitors will be able to participate in interactive content where they can learn how to build a support system, explore a range of emotions, identify unhealthy behaviors, and anonymously share about their experiences through stories, artwork, poetry, and songs.


"We know how to shout about abortion, but we don't know how to have a compassionate conversation," says Fredenburg, "It is my hope that in the midst of this volatile political season we might hear something different."


Contact: Ashley Walker, Christine Schicker

Source: The Maximus Group

Source URL:

Publish Date: October 9, 2008

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The IFRL is the largest grassroots pro-life organization in Illinois. A non-profit organization, that serves as the state coordinating body for local pro-life chapters representing thousands of Illinois citizens working to restore respect for all human life in our society. The IFRL is composed of people of different political persuasions, various faiths and diverse economic, social and ethnic backgrounds. Since 1973 the Illinois Federation for Right to Life has been working to end abortion and restore legal protection to those members of the human family who are threatened by abortion, infanticide and euthanasia. Diverse though we are, we hold one common belief - that every human being has an inalienable right to life that is precious and must be protected. IFRL is dedicated to restoring the right to life to the unborn, and protection for the disabled and the elderly.   Click here to learn more about the IFRL.