The New York City Council thinks it's real smart. They have devised a way to protect women who are going in for their abortion from harassment, coercion and threats of free bottles of water. Really.
New York City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn introduced the "Clinic Access Act" back in September and held a hearing on the bill last week. The bill creates a 15 foot "buffer zone" that protects women from sidewalk counselors or "protesters" when attempting to access reproductive health care.
Supposedly they are only trying to go after those who break the law or otherwise intimidate women into not having an abortion, but the language used in the text
of the bill is open enough that any attempt to talk to a woman who is entering the mill could be seen as violating the law.
Chris Slattery, the President of Expectant Mother Care
, is doing a fantastic job of rallying the troops to prevent this dumb bill from becoming law. He has done this in the past when former New York Governor Elliott Spitzer tried to shut down all the CPC's in New York and failed.
Speaker Quinn's press release
about the bill will make you shake your head. She gives what she calls "Real-life examples of such harassment and coercion" which include "Patients being offered bottled water by protesters in order to forestall her abortion procedure, which endangers the life and well-being of women seeking pain-relief during the abortion procedure."
Also on the list of documented harassment and coercion are:
- Protestors using NYPD-owned barricades to hang posters and signs outside of the clinic
- Protestors offering free sonograms to patients but instead showing graphic anti-abortion propaganda
- Protestors shouting at patients that they were desecrating the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King.
Topping it all off though is the sympathetic article written by the New York Times
and the reporters notation in the last paragraph that on a visit to a local abortion mill to write the story, all the chairs in the waiting room were filled. "By 10 a.m., every one of the room’s 60 chairs had been claimed."
But wait a minute. If every chair is filled, doesn't that mean that women are waiting which could "forestall her abortion procedure, which endangers the life and well-being of women seeking pain-relief during the abortion procedure."