ROGERS, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – A Planned Parenthood clinic opening in Rogers sparks controversy in Benton County.
The new clinic will be the only one in northwest Arkansas, but happens to be opening in a county that- as of a few months ago- now proclaims itself as pro-life.
While there is a lot of opposition throughout the county, others say it is important to offer the many services Planned Parenthood provides.
“Planned parenthood is bad for Rogers and it’s bad for northwest Arkansas,” said Shelia Pursell, Director of NWA Respect Life.
Pursell started the petition against the clinic expanding to Rogers, but Chair of the Democratic Party of Arkansas Nicole Hart said it is needed.
“I can’t even fathom the idea of having somebody from the outside come into the doctors office and tell me what to do with my body,” Hart said.
A spokesperson for Planned Parenthood declined to interview but gave a statement.
As you may know, Planned Parenthood Great Plains chose to leave its Fayetteville location in 2019 due to challenges that posed concerns for the safety of its patients and staff. Since then, PPGP has been searching for a larger location to meet its growing patient demand and to address the lack of access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health care within the area. Our mission is to provide high-quality health care services to patients across the state of Arkansas, and we are thrilled to reinvest, reaffirm, and rebuild our commitment to our patients and the Northwest Arkansas community. The PPGP team couldn’t be prouder to reopen our doors in Northwest Arkansas to help area residents access affordable, high-quality sexual and reproductive health care — no matter what.”JESS KELSEY, ADVOCACY & DIGITAL MEDIA MANGER, PLANNED PARENTHOOD
There is no set date on when the clinic will open. Kelsey said it will be announced later this month.