HENRIETTA, N.Y (WROC) — The Central and Western New York Branch of Planned Parenthood is trying to catch up after being delayed for months to build a clinic in Henrietta. Last month, a Monroe County Judge ordered the Town Board to issue the special permit after the non-profit filed a lawsuit.  

Planned Parenthood is already having to extend its hours in Syracuse and build another facility in Buffalo. So, leaders say this expansion in Henrietta is crucial to meet a rise in demand for patients from out of state. 

Since the overturn of Roe vs. Wade in June, Madeline Donovan, with Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York, says they’ve seen hundreds of more patients coming from anti-abortion states. 

“We have seen almost 300 patients come from our affiliates out of state,” Donovan explained. “Some of them have come from as far away as Texas and Florida. A lot of them are coming from Ohio and Pennsylvania where they are seeing additional restrictions.”  

The board denied their initial permit to build in Henrietta in June. Prompting Planned Parenthood to file a lawsuit with the Monroe County Supreme Court. In October, the judge ruled “the board acted arbitrarily and capriciously” in denying the permit. Ordering Henrietta Councilmembers to issue it. While victorious, Planned Parenthood remains months behind in its opening plans.  

“This certainly delayed our progress and that’s always disappointing both for our staff and for our patients when the services we provide are so needed,” Donovan continued. “We believe everyone deserves access to this essential healthcare. We would be four months ahead about to open this facility.”  

The clinic will be located at 376 Jefferson Rd. which is labeled a B-1 Commercial District. Areas other medical facilities are already built in. But outside the Planned Parenthood Clinic in Rochester, Anti-Abortion Protestor Dorothy Hayes and others with Roc Love will End Abortion, argue patients have better options to turn to. 

“We have a mom mentors’ group that walks along women throughout the pregnancy and after the baby is born,” Hayes said. “We offer all sorts of resources as far as diapers, and baby formula, but we also do baby showers, we help women navigate the hurdles and trying to find avenues where they can find help.” 

Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York has anticipated around 5,000 patients will be visiting this clinic’s location a year. It will also offer all other healthcare services its non-profit is known for.  

Councilmembers on the Henrietta Town Board did not respond to our requests for comment. According to Henrietta Town Supervisor Stephen Schultz, who voted in favor of the initial special use permit, the legal fees to fight this lawsuit cost the town almost $20,000.