A county prosecutor in Arizona is calling for legislation to broaden the state’s existing law regarding the reporting of child abuse after an undercover investigation by Live Action Films exposed workers at a Planned Parenthood abortion business failing to report an apparent case.
Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas said during an interview with ArizonaCentral.com that the legislation should address the individuals required to report child abuse such as statutory rape.
His comments came as he confirmed there would be no prosecutions stemming from the Live Action video.
“There aren’t going to be prosecutions in this case, but there need to be changes,” he said in the ArizonaCentral.com interview.
He said the law needs to be specific that it applies to non-professional employees including “workers at medical or abortion clinics, such as clerical and triage staff, not just licensed professionals.”
Live Action is a “youth-led movement dedicated to advancing life rights and the truth that all men are created equal,” that utilizes that new media to spread its message.
The videos, taken undercover by a woman posing as a pregnant teen, were intended to expose the fact that many Planned Parenthood facilities are not meeting their legal obligation to report sexual abuse on minors.
In this case, Live Action’s president, Lila Rose, a UCLA undergraduate student, posed as a 15-year-old girl when she told workers at two separate Arizona Planned Parenthood clinics that she was pregnant with a child whose father was an adult.
The video has been posted on YouTube and also is embedded here:
Rose has done similar undercover video at a Memphis-based Planned Parenthood where an employee advised her, when she was posing 13-year-old, to lie to the judge about the age of her 31-year-old boyfriend, as well as at abortion businesses in Indiana.
Rose, who is neither pregnant nor a minor, went to the clinic in Phoenix with a friend where she explained that the father was “a lot older” than her and asked if they would be asked a lot of questions if he were to pay for the abortion.
The Planned Parenthood worker assured her saying, “No, we don’t ask a lot of questions.”
Rose and her companion were sent to a clinic down the street where they encountered a similar response from a worker.
“I mean everything is confidential here, you know what I mean?” a Planned Parenthood employee said.
Thomas identified a “glitch” in Arizona’s law that specifies that medical professionals must report child abuse but it doesn’t say that triage workers who make contact with the clients are bound to the same obligation.
According to Planned Parenthood, its procedures have changed since the video was recorded last July.
The company says now young women who seem to be the victim of a crime are told that the organization is legally obligated to report suspicions to the police. Clinicians are now responsible for reporting suspicions and not just counselors, as was the case in the past.
According to Thomas, Planned Parenthood representatives went to the Phoenix Police Department, prior to the release of the tapes, asking to receive additional training on reporting suspected abuse of minors. However, that training has yet to occur.
Rose, through her Live Action Films, has visited a number of Planned Parenthood facilities around the nation undercover, taking with her a witness and a hidden camera.
Her work already has revealed Planned Parenthood workers in several states either concealing apparent statutory rape or advising a patient on how to avoid various abortion restrictions.