Wednesday 17 January 2018

Pro-life centre criticised for recommending baby powder candles at crisis pregnancy centres

(stock photo)
(stock photo)

Blanaid Barr

A pro-life health centre has come under fire for a controversial Facebook post recommending baby powder candles at a crisis pregnancy centre.

The controversial Facebook post involved a picture of a scented candle with the caption, “Stanton Healthcare would recommend to all crisis pregnancy centres the new baby powder Yankee candle. It just smells like a new born baby. #lovelife #lovebabies #protectthemboth #loveyankeecandles”.

The Belfast centre has come under fire on social media for "manipulating vulnerable women".

Several commentators called the centre "old fashioned, patronising and insensitive" towards the difficulties surrounding crisis pregnancies.

One commenter remarked: “Might be handy for them to have a few baby candles around in the dark ages.”

Ciara Brown, a representative from Stanton Healthcare told Independent.ie that is was a "ridiculous debate".

"It’s just a ridiculous debate, what does it say about society that a crisis pregnancy centre can’t have a candle?”

Stanton Healthcare originates from America and opened in Belfast in 2015.

Stanton claims to be a fact-based impartial centre, "providing women with all the options".

Úna Reynolds, a 24-year-old activist for the pro-choice organisation ROSA (for Reproductive rights, against Oppression, Sexism and Austerity), claims that the centre is biased towards keeping unwanted pregnancies and does not provide impartial advice.

Speaking to Independent.ie Ms Reynolds said: “This post shows how the smallest things can be used to subliminally pressure and guilt vulnerable women.”

Ms Reynolds also doubts the validity of this centre saying: “These centres are utterly discredited and have been exposed multiple times for the lies they tell vulnerable women.”

Ciara Brown from Stanton Healthcare said that the response to the Facebook post was, “poor and pathetic” and denied deleting any controversial comments despite users claiming their angry comments have disappeared.

“A candle can’t force women to make a decision,” Ms Brown said. “It’s not manipulating women. It might ignite realisation that a child is within that mother, but only because that is the truth of what she is carrying.”

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