CHARLOTTE, NC (AP/WBTV) - Anti-abortion activists are protesting outside Planned Parenthood clinics across the Carolinas.
The protests in the Carolinas on Saturday morning are among hundreds of protests organized nationwide by anti-abortion groups.
They want to call attention to secretly taped videos that show Planned Parenthood officials elsewhere discussing the collection of fetal organs for research. Activists say the videos released by the anti-abortion group Center for Medical Progress show that Planned Parenthood illegally sells fetal tissue for profit.
"We are just so thankful for everybody that came out today," Tara Quinn said at a protest on Albemarle Road in Charlotte. "That people took their time on a busy Saturday. There's children out here, families out here, pastors out here, leaders of different organizations and ministries."
Planned Parenthood officials contend that any tissue donations are legal and ethical, as federal law allows abortion providers to be paid for processing fees. Regional officials say no clinic in the Carolinas participates in tissue donation.
In a statement from Planned Parenthood South Atlantic, Paige Johnson claims the protests intend to shame their patients.
"Women should be able to access health care without fear of violence, harassment, or intimidation. We are here for our patients, no matter what. For the women, men, and young people we serve, the care we provide isn't about politics – it's about their well-being, and we remain focused on ensuring our patients are able to access the health care we provide in a safe and caring environment."
The videos have prompted Republican lawmakers across the country to call for investigations.