Abortion opponents mark closure of Chattanooga's only clinic 28 years ago

They are mobilizing against local hires by Planned Parenthood

Staff photo by Wyatt Massey / Charlie Wysong, president of American Rights Coalition, stands outside the National Memorial for the Unborn on Vance Road on May 17, 2021. Wysong was one of the key organizers that helped close the city's last abortion clinic 28 years ago and renovated it to become a memorial and a pregnancy center.

Chattanooga's abortion clinic closed nearly 30 years ago this week, something anti-abortion organizers credit to God as they look to mobilize against Planned Parenthood with its recent hires in the city.

Charlie Wysong, president of American Rights Coalition, said he will again focus his efforts on bringing medical malpractice claims against abortion providers on behalf of women who were harmed during the procedure.

"Planned Parenthood doesn't locate anywhere without the desire to have an abortion clinic," Wysong said. "So we do not want to see an abortion clinic here, nor do we want to see an office that refers for abortions."

In March, anti-abortion advocates began organizing against Planned Parenthood, which hired a community organizer and a health educator for the city.

Tory Mills, director of community engagement for Planned Parenthood of Tennessee and North Mississippi, said the health educator position will help bring more comprehensive, accurate and nonjudgmental sex education to families in the region.