Parents protest Batavia library's Web link

Planned Parenthood site not credible, residents say

 
 
Published: 6/18/2008 12:07 AM

A group of Batavia parents is asking the library to take down a link on its Web site to a Planned Parenthood site for teens.

"There's no way teens can look at this and get accurate information," parent Kerry Knott told the Batavia Library Board on Tuesday. "It's extremely misleading, and I look to the library as a credible source of information."

She said the Web site, www.teenwire.com, listed under the library's health and fitness links in its Young Adult section, has inaccurate medical information and downplays the health risks involved in sexual activity and abortion.

"We as taxpayers should have a say in what the library is promoting and not promoting," she said.

More than 50 people attended the library board's meeting Tuesday night. Board members didn't discuss the issue and continued the public hearing on the issue to its next board meeting July 15.

Parents filed a complaint with the library, and a review committee of staff members found the site appropriate, library Director George Scheetz said. The group then asked to appeal that decision to the library board.

The library's staff and board members will review a 59-page booklet of information from the group and decide if a change should be made, he said.

"Accuracy is certainly a key issue for us," he said.

Pam Sutherland, vice president for public policy at Planned Parenthood Illinois, said the site's information is accurate.

"One thing Planned Parenthood has always prided itself on is giving medically accurate information," she said. The site has won awards for its content and offers an alternative to abstinence-only sex education teens may be getting, she said.

"Teens come to the Web site because they need information about all of their decisions," she said.