WASHINGTON, April 12, 2004 (LifeSiteNews.com) - American Life League’s STOPP International, a U.S. organization fighting Planned Parenthood’s anti-life agenda, has recently completed its investigation of the Girl Scout’s connections with Planned Parenthood. “We are astonished to find that of the councils that responded to our questions, 26% have relationships with Planned Parenthood,” said Jim Sedlak, executive director of STOPP International, “but what is even more surprising is that 79% of Girl Scout councils have not disclosed their position on Planned Parenthood by failing to answer a simple question-Do you have any relationship with Planned Parenthood?”

STOPP International’s investigation was sparked by a remark made by Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. CEO Kathy Cloninger, who told NBC News, “We have relationships…with Planned Parenthood organizations across the country, to bring information-based sex education programs to girls.” During their investigation, one CEO of a Girl Scout council responded to STOPP International’s inquiry, “I have been instructed to say ‘no comment’ to whatever you ask.”“If the Girl Scouts believe that partnering with Planned Parenthood is a benefit to young girls, then why are the Girl Scouts reluctant to talk about the connection?” asked Sedlak. “Their failure to answer the question leads many to wonder if these councils, in fact, do work with the organization. If that is the case, their stonewalling may represent an attempt to hide a relationship they do not want parents and the public to know about.”

STOPP has posted a web site (www.all.org/stopp/scouts) that lists every council by state and shows the results of the investigation. Of the 315 councils in the U.S., 17 councils reported having a relationship with PPFA, and 49 reported they do not. The remaining 249 failed to disclose their relationship.

“Some councils attempted to justify their partnership with Planned Parenthood by having parents sign permission slips,” Sedlak explained. “We maintain that, as an organization that purports to provide the best for young girls, it is the Girl Scouts organization itself that should be saying NO to Planned Parenthood. We ask every parent of a Girl Scout in areas served by councils that did not respond to our inquiry to insist the councils tell the truth.”

As parents find out about local councils, they can use a link on the web site to send corrections/comments to STOPP, and the site will be updated as new information is received. “It is important to understand,” Sedlak said, “we are not at war with the Girl Scouts, but that we are trying to protect young girls from the evils of Planned Parenthood. We are simply asking that Girl Scout councils stop their partnership with Planned Parenthood.”

Visit the STOPP web-site, at: http://www.all.org/stopp/st040412.htm

Read related LifeSIteNews.com coverage, “Pro-Life Group Aims to Oust Planned Parenthood From Girl Scouts,” at: http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2004/mar/04031211.html