by Amy Weintraub, Progress Florida
I was appalled last spring when our Florida Legislature made funding fake clinics a permanent part of the state budget to the tune of $4 million each year. I can only think (hope) that, aside from the few extremists leading the charge, the legislators did not comprehend the damage they were doing to their constituents who would be tricked into entering the doors of such places for the promise of a free pregnancy test.
With this permanent stream of cash heading their way, the 190+ fake clinics in Florida are becoming even more charismatic in evangelizing their “services” in our communities in order to browbeat Floridians into carrying their pregnancies to term.
Our team at Progress Florida decided to ramp up efforts to expose them. In addition to social media campaigns, a petition delivery to the Governor and Surgeon General, posting accurate online reviews, and visibility events outside the fake clinics, we thought an “explainer video” might take our warnings to a bigger audience.
With the guidance of Florida film producer and Progress Florida volunteer, Theresa Darlington, we contracted with an animation company, Crackitt Digital Web Solutions. It was up to us to develop the script and get all the info we wanted – the tactics used to lure in the unsuspecting, and the misinformation, judgement, and coercion served up – down to less than two minutes. Crackitt and Progress Florida worked together on every aspect of the project, from the look and feel of the animation to working with the voiceover artist. This took us outside our normal organizing activities for sure and we are proud of the results.
We hope exposefakeclinics.com followers check out our new video and share it widely:
Weintraub is the Reproductive Rights Program Director for Progress Florida and is a leader on the statewide Floridians for Reproductive Freedom coalition, where she chairs the Fake Clinics Work Group. A seasoned organizer, Amy has worked most of her adult life identifying, educating, and activating citizens toward social justice, particularly in the area of reproductive health (shout out to former employer WV FREE). Amy lives in St. Petersburg, FL with her spouse and two teenagers.