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Margaret Sanger, "New York City Hospital Ban on Birth Control Interview," 13 Sept 1958.

Source: " At 71, Mrs. Sanger Scores Dr. Jacobs, New York Times, Sept. 14, 1958, p. 59."



Margaret Sanger, founder of the birth control movement in the United States, said yesterday she was "delighted at the leadership taken by the different religions in defense of birth control" in the controversial city hospital policy.

"It comes a little late, but it is never too late," Mrs. Sanger said. She was interviewed by telephone on the eve of her seventy-first birthday, which she will celebrate today.

Mrs. Sanger lives in Tucson, Ariz., next door to her son, Dr. Stuart Sanger. Another son, Dr. Grant Sanger of Mount Kisco, reached Tucson yesterday to join the birthday celebration.

Mrs. Sanger said it was time the fight for birth control was not left "to those of us in Planned Parenthood who have been fighting all these years."

Mrs. Sanger faced strong opposition and was even sentenced to jail, when, as a young nurse in New York City, she sought to disseminate birth control information.

She was moved to action by dismay over young mothers in the slums. She said they were overburdened by more children than they were physically able to bear or care for.

"Laws have changed since then, and public opinion has changed, but the fight must still go on, because we still have strong opposition," she said yesterday.

"I am amazed that New York City, where I founded the first birth control clinic in the country, is still so backward. I have just come back from Honolulu, where they have birth control therapy in city hospitals. Imagine, more advanced than New York!"

Mrs. Sanger said she believed that the public airing of the controversy in New York City would prove "beneficial to all, including the Catholics." She described the ban on birth control therapy in city hospitals by Dr. Morris A. Jacobs, Commissioner of Hospitals, as a "disgraceful policy."

"Many Catholics across the country have told me they disapprove of this one position of their church," she said.

"Many of them come to our clinics. A look at statistics will prove that Catholics are having smaller families."

Mrs. Sanger is still active. With the aid of two secretaries she handles correspondence from all parts of the world. She is president of the International Planned Parenthood Federation and plans to go to the organization's international conference at New Delhi, India, next year.

In her spare time, she paints, concentrating on the deserts and mountains in Arizona. She has eight grandchildren. Six are the children of Dr. Grant Sanger and his wife.

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