Group protests as Planned Parenthood opens Kissimmee clinic



KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Planned Parenthood of Greater Orlando cut the ribbon and opened the doors to a controversial new health clinic in Kissimmee on Wednesday.

The center, on Oak Commons Boulevard, will be the first facility to offer abortions in Osceola County.

About 70 protesters were outside the office as officials opened the clinic for business. The clinic is directly across the street from Osceola Regional Medical Center and will start serving patients in June.

At the opening, Planned Parenthood leaders talked about the need for affordable health care for women in Osceola County and they listed a variety of services that will be available like mammograms and screenings for sexually transmitted diseases.

But demonstrators outside were focused on the abortion issue.

"I'm not against women's health care, I'm against abortion. Abortion is something that ends the life of a beautiful baby and that baby, no matter how it got here is still a gift.  And if a woman doesn't want to care for the baby there are hundreds of people who would love to take over," said Osceola County resident Anita Morin.

Shortly after Planned Parenthood announced it was coming to Osceola County, several people showed up at a city commission meeting to express their outrage.

Many are opposed to the facility because the new clinic will perform abortions. Planned Parenthood officials said abortions make up less than 10 percent of the health services they provide.

A suspicious bag was left in the office complex where the clinic is located following the announcement.

A Kissimmee Police Department representative told Channel 9 that a liquid found inside is still being tested at a lab in Tallahassee.

Police said Planned Parenthood officials have requested an off-duty officer and they paid for that officer to be there.