Joseph Patrick Stanton, a pro-life public interest litigator for 25 years, said today, “It’s clear that the city of Philadelphia is in the business of killing babies.”
That comment comes on the heels of an explosive investigative report from the Philadelphia Daily News which claimed that a Philadelphia Department of Human Services employee allegedly pressured and arranged for a 16-year-old girl in DHS care to have a late-term abortion in another state.
Because the girl was a minor, DHS reportedly asked the girl’s birth mother for approval for an abortion but the girl’s mother refused. So DHS allegedly arranged for a judge’s order to procure an abortion for the teen, something they’ve reportedly done dozens of times over the past few years. The DHS employee even took the child out of school to procure the abortion.
After a payment mix-up that delayed the abortion almost a week, DHS also arranged for the late-term abortion for the minor in New Jersey. It’s important to note that late-term abortions are illegal in Pennsylvania and the girl was reportedly in her 24th week.
Stanton pointed out that many babies are able to live outside the womb at 24 weeks.
According to reports the teen was originally excited about the baby, even discussing a name for her second child. But all that ended, according to the girl’s foster mother when a DHS employee allegedly told the girl that DHS would separate her children if she had the second child. It was shortly after that when the girl announced her determination to abort her child.
The girl’s social worker Marisol Rivera, was ordered to take the girl to the clinic but she had refused to take the teen due to her “religious beliefs.” Her supervisor threatened to fire her for insubordination. She said “They hired me to work in child protection, not to kill children,” according to the Daily News.
A short while later, Rivera was not so mysteriously fired for “deficiencies” in her job performance.
Stanton, who advised the Daily News reporter on abortion law for the story, said that the city could face numerous legal issues on many fronts as he questioned the legality of the city department paying for abortions with taxpayer money, the legality of crossing state lines with a minor to procure a late term abortion, and he said that if the allegations prove true the city acted criminally in coercing a minor to procure an abortion.
Stanton also wondered if DHS informed the court when they received the court order that they would be transporting the girl to a different state for a late term abortion which is illegal in Pennsylvania.
Stanton, said yesterday that Pennsylvania’s Abortion Control Act “forbids Commonwealth funds from being used to pay for abortions.” Stanton said that the city would likely make the argument that the state and federal funds are separated but he said he was dubious.
Stanton said he hoped that due to the outrageous nature of the city’s actions he hoped that someone with subpoena power would investigate the entire procedure from start to finish thoroughly. But no matter what legal issues the city faces Stanton said that sadly, “The city of Philadelphia is complicit in facilitating the death of these kids. And that’s awful. Awful.”