Pittsburgh rally calls for defunding of Planned Parenthood

PITTSBURGH — A rally calling for the defunding of Planned Parenthood took place Saturday morning in downtown Pittsburgh.

About 200 pro-life supporters gathered on the sidewalk outside Planned Parenthood with signs to show their opposition to the organization.

The rally, one of hundreds planned nationwide, started at 9 a.m. outside the Planned Parenthood on Liberty Avenue.

Pro-life supporters want Planned Parenthood to be stripped of all federal funding, which they want redirected to federally qualified health centers that do not perform abortions.

"Abortion is cruel and unusual punishment for somebody who couldn't possibly have done anything to deserve it, so I speak up for them," said William Harrison.

Organizers emphasized that their intent is not to take away programs that help poor women and families.

“The effort to defund Planned Parenthood has nothing to do with taking healthcare away from women. It's about taking tax dollars away from the nation's largest abortion chain,” Tim Barr, with 40 Days For Life Pittsburgh, said in a release.

The demonstrators were countered by several pro-choice supporters who are in favor of Planned Parenthood.

Police were on hand to monitor the demonstration. No incidents were reported.