- Associated Press - Thursday, September 17, 2015

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Planned Parenthood Association of Utah is working to protect funding and has hired the attorney who led a push for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to ordain women.

Kate Kelly was hired as strategic advocacy and policy counsel, a position she says was created as an aggressive response to Gov. Gary Herbert’s order that state agencies cut off federal funding to the group, the Salt Lake Tribune reported (https://bit.ly/1Jdt2Pr).

Herbert’s order was issued in response to secretly recorded videos by a California anti-abortion group showing Planned Parenthood officials describing how they provide aborted fetal tissue for research.

The agency received $272,000 in federal funds last fiscal year to provide testing and reporting for sexually transmitted diseases and abstinence education. The money also supported a program that provides victims of rape and sexual assault with pregnancy tests and STD screenings.

She said her legal strategy challenging the governor’s order is under consideration, and that a Sept. 29 rally at the capitol has been planned.



Kelly starts her new job Monday after having spent a year in Kenya. She said the governor’s order prompted her to apply with Planned Parenthood.

“It made it concrete in my mind that women of Utah need to stand up for reproductive rights,” Kelly said. “I think what Gov. Herbert did negatively affects women in Utah, his constituents and particularly low-income women of color who access services of Planned Parenthood.”

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Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune, https://www.sltrib.com

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