The president of the largest abortion provider in the nation has been ousted from her role amid conflict over the direction of the organization and her messaging strategy.
Leana Wen, the first leader of Planned Parenthood to ever be a medical doctor, was terminated during a secret meeting of the group’s board on Tuesday, reports say.
She has only held the job for eight months, following Cecile Richards who led the group from 2006 to 2018.
In a tweet Tuesday, Wen noted that her termination was unbeknownst to her and that she was engaged in good faith negotiations with the Planned Parenthood board about her leaving the organization over “philosophical differences” about the group’s future.
“With the landscape changing dramatically in the last several months and the right to safe, legal abortion care under attack like never before, I understand the shift in the Board’s prioritization,” she said in her letter.
She noted that she is proud of her work and will always stand with the organization.
Wen’s tenure at the helm of the abortion giant comes at a time when abortion has risen to the surface of American politics as conservative state legislatures pass heavy restrictions on the practice, such as heartbeat bills, and as liberal states adopt legislation permitting abortion until the moment of birth.
Much of Wen’s messaging of the issue framed abortion in health care terms rather than political language, something that apparently led to her firing. Multiple reports indicate the board terminated her employment because she was not sufficiently aggressive given the particular political season, with abortion being restricted in states across the South and Midwest.
Citing two sources, Buzzfeed reported Tuesday that Wen refused to use “trans-inclusive” language such as saying “people” instead of “women.” Wen also reportedly told staff that she thought that speaking about transgender issues would “isolate people in the Midwest.” At many locations, the abortion giant dispenses cross-sex hormones for transgender and nonbinary-identified persons.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Brandon Showalter