The first Choose Life license plates were introduced in Florida 11 years ago. When Merry Nordeen heard about them, she thought, "That's a great idea. I want that for my car." But no one in Massachusetts was working to bring the plates to the Commonwealth. So Nordeen decided to give it a try. She started a corporation, secured non-profit status and began collecting registrations. Seven years later, the plates made it on the road, which was just two years ago this July.
There are 27 states that offer the plates, which have raised over $14 million nationally. In two more states, they have been approved but are not yet available. Efforts continue in 14 states, and in just seven there is no effort underway.
Because of the money raised by the plates, supporters say they are significantly different than a Pro-Life bumper sticker.
On their website, the Massachusetts Family Institute says, "The Choose Life License Plate is a wonderful way to raise public awareness and much needed funding to support the positive choices of life, adoption and safe havens for unwanted pregnancies and newborns.
Anne Fox praised the solidarity the plates bring to people who are Pro-Life. So far, she has not heard any reports of plate owners receiving negative feedback.
"It's just been a very positive experience for people," she said, adding about the plates, "Seeing them on the road, I just feel great."
Nordeen agreed, "Whenever I do see one on the road in the state of Massachusetts, I'm so happy because you feel like it's extended family, like-minded people who have put forth the effort to get the plate."
For more information about the Choose Life plates, visit www.machoose-life.org