Deceptive Advertising Laws and PHOs

Pregnancy center marketing has been under attack for decades, but recent legislation in some states has made more aggressive advances towards silencing the voices of those who want to provide women with alternatives to abortion. Jor-El Godsey, Tracie Shellhouse, Andrea Trudden, and Danielle White discuss how these laws are deceptive and attempt to tell a false narrative of the work of pro-life pregnancy help.

Links:

 

Sponsored by Pregnancy Help News

Notes:

  • The First Amendment protects the speech of pregnancy help organizations. Historically, the courts have struck down legislation based on First Amendment prudence (laws were too vague, viewpoint discrimination, content discrimination, etc.)
  • This legislation is intended to cause confusion and fear so that pregnancy centers are scared into silence.
  • Training your staff on answering questions regarding your services is essential to providing quality care for your clients.
  • Be aware of the standards that social media advertising have that might limit how you advertise; these standards continue to change over time.
  • Disclaimers on your website can be helpful, but are not a legal requirement.
  • Be consistent in your messaging. Women need to know that pregnancy help exists. There’s nothing wrong with truthfully promoting your services!

 

Reacting to Election Results

David Mahan from Center for Christian Virtue joins Heartbeat team members Andrea Trudden, Jessica Warner, and Lora Current to discuss the national ramifications of the recent election in Ohio that resulted in the enshrinement of abortion into the state constitution.

Visit www.heartbeatservices.org/gotv for “Get Out the Vote” resources

Sponsor: Option Line
OptionLine.org info@optionline.org

Notes: 

  • Amendments that states like MI and OH went up against are confusing and broadly worded; this caused much division among voters
  • Voters responded strongly to the concern over parental rights (even over abortion rights)
  • Abortion is just one piece of the “reproductive decisions” wording that is used
  • The abortion lobby falsely claimed that without this amendment, women could not get care for a miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy
  • Pro-life efforts were outspent by roughly 20 million dollars in media advertising by the abortion lobby in Ohio this election season
  •  Church engagement is vital. Ohio saw an increase in churches speaking out against Issue 1, but we still needed more.
  • Some people assumed that Ohio is a “life state” and an abortion amendment could never pass. There weren’t enough people willing to get out and vote, or who didn’t realize the severity of Issue 1.
  • Nine additional states could have a similar amendment on the ballot next year
  • In Ohio, existing pro-life regulations will be challenged in the courts. It will be difficult to uphold anything on parental rights, abortion limits, etc. when put up against the new amendment
  • Pregnancy Help Organizations are vital now more than ever in states like Ohio to be there for women as abortion is pushed on them even more than before

 

Why Unity Matters for Pregnancy Help

Join Andrea Trudden, VP of Communications & Marketing, Tracie Shellhouse, VP of Ministry Services, and Jor-El Godsey, President of Heartbeat International as they discuss how the pregnancy help movement celebrates diversity while staying united in our mission to save lives and make abortion unthinkable. They also announce this year’s Annual Conference theme, and why it is important for the movement in light of today’s culture.

Click here to find out more about our Annual Conference and register today!

Conference 2024

Reaching Your Year-End Fundraising Goals – Haley Limo

Haley Limo joins Beth Diemert to discuss how to make the most out of the time that we have left in 2023 to meet your year-end fundraising goals. Plus, Haley shares advice on how to start your fundraising strong in the new year!

Contact Haley Limo at haley@lotphilanthropy.com

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Notes:

  • Diversify your streams of income so that you can compensate if one stream doesn’t bring in as much as you hoped
  • National trends in giving show that this was a challenging year for non-profits
  • Plan to make most of your asks before Thanksgiving
  • Reach out to a few of your lapsed major gifts donors at the end of the year
  • Make your ask specific. Ask for support for a particular need that must be met in the next year.
  • Start a “story box” to collect client stories that can be used to share your impact with donors.
  • Election years can present opportunities to boost your support from donors.
  • Keep connecting with donors on a personal level. Relationship is important both with clients and supporters.

Sponsored by: Heartbeat Academy

Preventing Burnout in Your Maternity Home – Gina Tomes

Valerie Harkins interviews Gina Tomes about how the 24/7 care model of maternity homes can take a toll on staff and volunteers. Through years of experience (including founding the maternity home, Bethlehem House), Gina has learned a few key things to watch out for and how to prevent burnout among staff.

Contact housing@heartbeatinternational.org to connect with Valerie Harkins, Heartbeat International Housing Specialist

Notes:

  • High staff turnover is often attributed to burnout or exhaustion, especially in ministry work.
  • Staff should be trained well so that they are equipped to handle the many needs of residents.
  • Cross-training staff can help each staff member to take time off regularly.
  • Find a housing model that works well for both residents and staff.
  • Retreats and conference get your team outside of their typical day-to-day work and allows for time of fellowship and sharing of ideas.
  • Register here for Heartbeat’s Annual Conference!

Sponsored by Heartbeat Academy

 

Banquet Bloopers and Blessings – Kirk Walden and David Bereit

It’s banquet season, so we have brought in Kirk Walden and David Bereit to talk with Jor-El Godsey about some of their tips and tricks to holding a successful fundraising event. From fires, falling onstage, and protesters to powerful client moments and overwhelming financial support, Kirk and David have experienced a lot in their travels!

Notes:

  • Don’t assume that attendees know everything about your mission and who you serve.
  • Illustrate your mission by telling stories of the families who have been served by your organization
  • Don’t apologize for asking for money. Remember that you are giving people a chance to be a part of your amazing mission!
  • Speak the language of your audience (using terms and explanations that the audience can connect with).
  • Be flexible as unforeseen events may disrupt your banquet; be sensitive to what the distraction may be and remember that your audience is with you. They understand!
  • Remember those who wanted to make it to the banquet but were not able to, or those who were not ready to give that night. Maximize what happens after the banquet by connecting with people who want to give later.

Sponsored by: Ambassador Speakers Bureau

Prenatal Diagnosis Part 2 – Resources

Nafisa Kennedy, Director of Option Line, interviews Dr. Tara Sander Lee and Chaney Mullins Gooley about the resources that are available to parents who have received news of a prenatal diagnosis. Using the new website, PrenatalDiagnosis.org, families can access informative resources as well as chat with a consultant about their options. This website and the resources listed equip pregnancy help organizations, churches, and individuals with the tools they need to be ready to serve a family facing a prenatal diagnosis.

 

Notes:

  • A prenatal diagnosis can mean that parents who would not otherwise consider abortion may now be abortion vulnerable; often the pregnancy was planned and the family was excited to welcome a new member to their family.
  • Advances in diagnostic tools have allowed for more birth defects or fetal anomalies to be detected before birth. While this can be a helpful way for an unborn child to be treated before birth for medical conditions, false positive test results or a lack of understanding of the results can lead to the pressure to abort.
  • Perinatal bereavement care is available to parents, and is often chosen instead of abortion when given as option. This can be a very healing experience for the whole family.
  • Parent Care Coordinators help parents through the different services that the family might need including communications with the hospital, surgeons, arranging childcare for other children, travel, etc.
  • Adoptive parents are ready to care for children with medical conditions; this is an option that is not often presented to parents who may not be ready or able to care for a child who is diagnosed before birth with a medical condition.
  • PrenatalDiagnosis.org offers a comprehensive list of resources up to delivery and beyond. Topics include diagnosis, effects on the family, support groups, pregnancy loss healing, and site visitors can connect to a live chat so that help is available 24/7.

Sponsored by Option Line

Get Out the Vote

November elections are quickly approaching, and states like Ohio have abortion on the ballot. There is a growing need for the pregnancy help movement to step into the political conversation in defense of life in all states, and we must speak up and ensure our hard-earned victories are not erased, nor is abortion further embedded into our constitutions. Join Heartbeat staff members Jessica Warner, Leanna Baumer, and Lora Current in this discussion about strategy, resources, and practical steps that you can take to protect life in your state.

Resources:

Notes:

  • States like Ohio are facing (or could soon face) ballot initiatives to change the state constitution to allow for abortion up until birth
  • The ballot language is often broad and causes confusion among voters
  • If passed, these changes to the state’s constitution would be very difficult to amend in the future
  • Big Abortion is watching Ohio to see how well this tactic works, planning ballot initiatives in additional states for 2024 if this passes
  • Pregnancy Help Organizations are uniquely positioned to share the truth on life issues with clients, donors, and community supporters; you are the experts on the needs the families in your community!
  • It is important to stay updated and to educate your staff on state issues
  • State coalitions are a powerful way to make your voice heard, and can help you strategize as a group to make sure the story of pregnancy help is told on your terms
  • 501(c)(3) organizations are allowed to share their perspective about how policies might help/harm their community
  • Partnering with groups such as your local Family Research Council and Right to Life can equip you and help you stay informed
  • Pray! Take time to care for yourself and your team

Sponsor: Pregnancy Help News

Prenatal Diagnosis Part 1 – Informed Consent

Petra Wallenmeyer guides this discussion with Gary Thome, Heartbeat International Board Member and DiAnn Ecret, PhD, Healthcare Ethics, to shed light on the lack of informed consent given to parents facing a prenatal diagnosis. A prenatal diagnosis can mean that parents who were not previously considering abortion are now abortion-vunerable due to the way that information is presented to them by healthcare providers. Oftentimes, the difference in a screening test vs a diagnostic test is not clarified, and abortion is strongly suggested as opposed to alternatives such as carrying to term and exploring treatment options. Pregnancy help organizations can equip themselves to be ready to serve parents with resources to support them during a difficult time.

Resources:

Sponsored by: Option Line

Pro-Life Activism – Angela Erickson

With a background ranging from Executive Director of a pregnancy center to Students for Life Regional Coordinator, Angela Erickson has a lot of experience in pro-life work in the state of Minnesota. Angela draws from her experience to share about the challenges of lobbying in an abortion state, and shares what works well to promote collaboration between communities, legislators, and pregnancy help organizations.

Resources

Sponsored by: Heartbeat Academy