BRISBANE, Australia, May 31, 2013 ( – Australian pro-life leader Teresa Martin saw something she never expected to see when she drove past the Marie Stopes facility at Bowen Hills in Brisbane. “We were stunned at the billboard,”.

The billboard, advertizing Miele Australia vacuum cleaners, reads, “Suction so powerful it's scary.”

The inadvertent placement of advertising for vacuum cleaners on the side of an abortion clinic was part of a national advertising campaign for Miele Australia. Miele told the company sought removal of their advertising from the billboard the moment they became aware of its location.

LifeSiteNews contacted Marie Stopes Australia for comment. No staff authorized to speak with the media were available, and calls were not returned.

The product placement may have harmed more than the company's bottom line. It may have traumatized post-abortive women who experienced suction abortions.


According to trauma counselor Anne Lastman, “The sound in common of a vacuum cleaner nearly always will trigger recall of those traumatic memories.”

“Clients have also mentioned that the noise of a kitchen blender will also do this,” she said. “This usually results from the experiences of early gestation abortions where the clients are only placed under a 'twilight sedation' and are not unconscious.”

She added that the second most common trigger of abortion trauma is smell. “Smell is one of the most powerful of our senses, so it makes sense that it will imprint so well in our memory, such as the smell of alcohol swabs or other substances used in a surgery.”

Anne notes that without exception, there is always the memory of the dull and sad looking faces of other clients in the waiting room. “This has become such a common recollection that new counselling clients are now asked about this as a standard question. Contrary to the feminists who say that an abortion empowers women, in 17 years I have never heard one client tell me that they have seen a happy face when waiting for an abortion.”

For post-abortive women, the trigger can be anything. Other triggers include song (perhaps one playing on the radio as they traveled to the abortion clinic) or hearing the name of one of the facility's staff members or the doctors. It can occur almost immediately after the fact or at any time in the future.

Abortionists attempt to turn this on its head, instead claiming that the presence of pro-life activists outside the clinic will traumatize the women who arrive there for an abortion.

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In a Brisbane Times article Marie Stopes Australia director of clinical services Jill Michelson said, “A woman's decision to terminate her pregnancy is a matter for her and her doctor and she should not be subjected to personal intimidation or unsolicited third party opinions and views.”

She went on to paint the 40 Days For Life vigil participants as a “religiously affiliated, vocal minority who do not represent the majority Australian opinion.”

The claims of being traumatized are not true, according to Lastman. 

“When the clients accept the literature it's bad for business,” she said.” When a woman turns around and decides to keep her baby and not abort, the abortionist loses his chance to make thousands of dollars in Medicare subsidised fees. In Melbourne, the largest abortion clinic has security guards all the time and that is to keep the helpers away.”