Health clinic approval damages trust with local faith community
An open letter to the Del Norte County Unified District Board: I have analyzed the proposed Memorandum of Understanding between the school district and the Open Door Clinic. I am dismayed by the provisions embedded in the policies of the clinic, despite the highlighted disclaimer on the first page of the MOU that abortion services will not be provided at Two Trees.
Your disclaimer will not prevent the dissemination of abortion information or services to the teens (aka, minor children) who use the clinic. The clinic will operate within its own charter (not yours), as you provide in Section 4 of the proposed agreement. Their rules include providing services to minor children for "Pregnancy. Contraception. Abortion. Emergency Medical Services. Sexual Assault Services" etc. Minor children "of any age" may sign a consent form for any of these services. Parental notification or consent is not required. And that is reprehensible.
There is no statutory requirement for this clinic to be on school
property. The $540 per month lease payments speak to the fact that you
want this clinic on school property no matter what concerned citizens
may say. To bind the school district officially and monetarily to a
clinic that provides things the community has resisted for years (eg.,
abortion "counseling" services and assistance and free contraception) is
a travesty. Please rescind this Memorandum of Understanding with the
Open Door Clinic.
Two of my children graduated from DNHS, one of them a valedictorian
of her class, the other nearly so. Had this clinic been on school
grounds during their high school years, my wife and I would have found
alternative schooling for them. And we would not have been alone. School
Board, it is now apparent that you have seriously damaged trust between
parents and families and their local school district, particularly
those within the faith community in Del Norte County. However, it is
never too late to overturn a bad decision.
Rev. Dr. Russell Green,
Pelican Bay Evangelical Free Church
Editor's note: While there is currently no clinic on school
district property, the state laws governing provision of services and
parental notification requirements at the proposed location are the same
as those governing the current clinic operation.