Planned Parenthood documents reveal longtime disdain for adoption

Most pro-lifers know that adoption has never been a big part of Planned Parenthood’s work. But a little known book released decades ago reveals just how negative Planned Parenthood’s views on adoption have historically been.

The book Aborting Planned Parenthood by Robert H. Ruff was written after some of Planned Parenthood’s secret documents came to light. These records were retrieved from the trash outside one of the largest Planned Parenthood clinics in the country. One set of documents concerned the attitude of Planned Parenthood’s leadership and workers toward adoption.

Ruff found records of a survey given to Planned Parenthood workers on whether adoption should be considered part of Planned Parenthood’s mission statement. Only a very small number – 20% – said that Planned Parenthood should be involved in facilitating adoptions.

One clinic worker answered the question with:

No. It would present an apparent and possibly actual conflict of interest. Difficult to finance. Very draining on staff time and overall effort.

This worker saw a clear “conflict of interest” between Planned Parenthood’s goal of providing and promoting abortion and helping women to place their children with adoptive families.

Another worker said:

Only as a referral. It might be very confusing to maintain a pro-choice stance when an agency also is invested in finding an infant to place.

One would think that a “pro-choice” stance would include the “choice” to put a baby up for adoption, and not just the “choice” of abortion. After all, supporters of legal abortion constantly say that no one is “pro-abortion” and that women should be allowed to freely choose what to do with their babies. But this worker knows that the cause of abortion on demand is not helped by helping women choose adoption.

A third worker said:

I think we have to look very carefully at the issues involved. For our clients, we need to be sure that the information and services we provide are really in their best interest. A pregnant fifteen-year-old should not be seen as the ‘solution’ to an infertile couple’s problems. We need to be very careful not to cast women in the role of ‘baby producers’…

One of the few clinic workers who did support helping women make plans for adoption said:

We have historically presented adoption as an option in a most matter of fact way without presenting the whole picture. Of those patients who choose adoption, it only makes sense for us to be their means to an end.

These quotes reveal that Planned Parenthood has never really been supportive of any choice except abortion. Planned Parenthood’s ideology and promotion of abortion is well documented. Adoption does not fit their philosophy- or their business model.


No one can deny that abortion is very lucrative for Planned Parenthood. When Cecile Richards testified before Congress, she was confronted with the statistic that 86% of Planned Parenthood’s earned income comes from abortion. Richards let the statistic go unchallenged.

In the early 1990s, I remember hearing the statistic that abortions at Planned Parenthood outnumbered adoption referrals 100 to 1. In 2012, it was revealed that Planned Parenthood aborted 340 children for every one woman referred for adoption. The number of babies whose mothers choose adoption after going to Planned Parenthood have been shrinking. Between 1997 and 2000, years after Aborting Planned Parenthood was written, adoption referrals decreased at Planned Parenthood by a whopping 73.5%.  During the same period, the number of abortions done at Planned Parenthood increased by 19.3%.

Even though Aborting Planned Parenthood was written a generation ago, things have not gotten better at Planned Parenthood with regard to adoption. doption referrals have never been common at Planned Parenthood, and adoption has never been part of their mission. As the years pass, the number of adoptions among Planned Parenthood patients has plummeted, and the number of abortions has grown.

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