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Planned Parenthood Celebrates Its 100th Anniversary

Photo credit: Nic McVicker

El Centro's Planned Parenthood clinic is in a strip mall on a busy street. The clinic's sign is shown, May 23, 2016.

The local affiliate, Planned Parenthood of the Pacific Southwest, has 17 health centers in San Diego, Riverside and Imperial counties. In San Diego County clinics alone, Planned Parenthood treats about 100,000 people each year.

It all began in a brownstone in Brooklyn.

Planned Parenthood marked its 100th anniversary on Sunday. Today, it has more than 650 health centers nationwide.

The organization is one of the nation's leading providers of reproductive health care. It's also a major advocate for women's health and comprehensive sex education.

The local affiliate, Planned Parenthood of the Pacific Southwest, has 17 health centers in San Diego, Riverside, and Imperial counties. In San Diego County clinics alone, Planned Parenthood treats about 100,000 people each year.

Cita Walsh, the local chapter's vice president of marketing and communications, thinks it's important to remember how much things have changed.

"When Planned Parenthood was first founded, people were jailed for opening birth control clinics. It was considered pornography," Walsh explained. "So, the laws had to change, for people to understand that it really is health care.”

Planned Parenthood clinics provide birth control, abortions and testing for sexually transmitted diseases. About 15 percent of their patients are men.

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