"Choose Life" Plate Redesigned
Special Report - April 17, 2009
A coalition of pro-life groups unveiled a new design for North Carolina’s “Choose Life” license plate at a press conference held at the General Assembly earlier this week. The pro-life coalition, which includes North Carolina Right to Life and North Carolina Pro-Life Democrats, wants the leadership of the State House to allow a vote on HB 168-“Choose Life” Special Plate, which has been introduced by Representative Mitch Gillespie (R-Marion) for eight years in a row, but never considered. HB 168 currently sits in the Rules Committee. The bill would direct $15 of each $25 license plate toward pregnancy care centers in North Carolina that offer pregnancy and STD testing, counseling and other free services to men and women at no cost to taxpayers. In 2008, more than 85 pregnancy care centers in the state provided free services to over 46,000 men and women facing unplanned pregnancies.
“North Carolina’s pregnancy care centers offer information, emotional support and practical help to thousands of women who face the challenges of unexpected pregnancies,” said Bobbie Meyer, Executive Director of the Pregnancy Resource Center of Charlotte. “The Choose Life license plate will help us to assist more women with our services and encourage healthy, stable families in our communities.”
The colorful “Choose Life” license plate was designed by Bervard graphic artist, Deborah Vernon Scott under the direction of the Carolina Pregnancy Care Fellowship. Currently, 24 states now allow motorists to purchase “Choose Life” license plates, including Virginia. North Carolina is the only state in the southeast that does not allow the purchase of the pro-life license plates, despite the fact that there are over 135 different specialty license plates sold in the stateall approved by the General Assembly.
“There's no question that this issue is not just about the life issue. It's also about fairness and justice,” said Eva Ritchey, president of North Carolina Pro-Life Democrats, on a recent broadcast of “Family Policy Matters,” the North Carolina Family Policy Council’s weekly radio program. “If you have 130 license plates in the state of North Carolina on every subject from ‘save the sea turtle’ to NASCAR to shag dancing, yet you're going to tell only one group, the Choose Life group, that they can't have their license plate…That simply is unacceptable.” Ritchey recently told LifeNews.com that if the leadership of the General Assembly does not allow a vote on the “Choose Life” bill this year, the state may soon be facing a lawsuit.
The bill sponsors and supporters of the “Choose Life” plates are asking North Carolinians to contact House Speaker Joe Hackney and House Finance Committee Chair, Rep. Paul Luebke, and ask them to allow a vote on HB 168.
Copyright © 2009. North Carolina Family Policy Council. All rights reserved.