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‘Heightened alert’: Abortion providers brace for Supreme Court ruling – Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon 2022-06-22 09:32:00 –

During the first week of work at the Philadelphia Abortion Clinic, Amanda Kiffary was taught how to find a bomb. About a year later, protesters blocked the doorway to the Women’s Center, at some point pulling Kifaly into something similar to a mosh pit, surrounding her and pushing her away.

And last winter night argument Before the US Supreme Court in a case that could end the national right to abortion, people gathered outside the New Jersey clinic with lawn chairs, coolers, and fiery torch. In the past, Kiffary, who is now Vice President of Abortion Access, says.

Such scenes have been familiar to healthcare providers and patients nationwide for decades since the groundbreaking Roe v. Wade decision in 1973 legalized abortion. At times, violence, such as bombing, arson, and murder, is much more serious. Since Dr. David Gunn was killed outside the abortion clinic in Florida in 1993 Deadly shooting in 2015 Of the three in the Colorado Plan parent-child relationship.

Currently, some providers and law enforcement agencies are worried about what will happen next. They are preparing for an increase in violence after the Supreme Court has ruled that the issue of abortion has historically soared as it has gained widespread public attention, such as after the state has approved new restrictions. If the decision ends the Roe v. Wade case — Leaked draft opinion In states where abortion is legal, we expect protests, harassment and other violence to be more concentrated and intensified.

“Experience shows that people protesting banned state clinics are not just packing up and going home,” said Melissa Fowler, chief program director for the Abortion Federation.

According to Fowler, the group and the hundreds of abortion clinics it represents have been “increasing vigilance” since the disagreement. The organization has staff specializing in 24-hour security. They go to the clinic to train with employees and volunteers in scenarios such as bomb threats and active shooters, and give advice on where to place security cameras. We also perform safety assessments at the doctor’s home, monitor online threats, and consult local law enforcement agencies.

In some areas, local police are working with clinics to reduce the potential for violence. The Sheriff’s Office in Jacksonville, Florida announced last month that police would be stationed outside the clinic, and police in Little Rock, Arkansas installed a camera on a crane near the abortion clinic. actor.

Police in Cherry Hill, NJ, immediately after the leak and for the next few days, began additional patrols around the location of the Women’s Center, Kiffary said.

However, the relationship between the clinic and local police is not always positive, and clinics need to consider whether the heavy police presence scares patients, Fowler said. In Kifferly’s experience, the degree to which clinics and police stations work together depends on the city or state. She recalled assaulting a police officer outside the Philadelphia clinic and said she should “call 911.”

NAF, which collects monthly data from more than 500 members on harassment and violence, reported a surge in incidents in 2020, the latest year the group released the data. The number of murder or intimidation threats, assaults and assault threats both more than doubled, and providers reported more than 24,000 cases of harassment email or internet harassment.

After Donald Trump took office, abortion providers reported a rise, “the militants felt it was okay if they didn’t hide in the shadows,” Fowler said. The coronavirus pandemic seems to make things worse, with abortion clinics in all four states operating women’s centers in New Jersey, Connecticut, Georgia, and Pennsylvania while churches and businesses open abortion clinics. I’m angry that it’s open. It’s closed.

Opponents of abortion have also been the target of violence, and the FBI in the 2020 memo has described the case as “rare” historically, but has increased the number of cases since the draft opinion leaked. There is.

The Department of Homeland Security’s Department of Information Analysis said shortly after the draft opinion was published, it was likely to have caused radical violence by people on both sides of the matter.

Susan B. Anthony ProLife America said these were one of more than 40 cases of violence, intimidation and vandalism in pregnancy centers and churches in recent weeks.

In early June, a man with a gun, knife, and cable tie was arrested nearby. Judge Brett Kavanaugh Go home at midnight. He was angry with his draft opinion as well as the deadly shootings at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, so he told police he wanted to kill justice.

The court is expected to rule in the next few days or weeks.

As for what will happen next to abortion providers, much focus has been placed on how to provide care to those seeking it if abortion is banned in more states. But Fowler said another concern came to mind. “We also need to focus on safety.”

‘Heightened alert’: Abortion providers brace for Supreme Court ruling Source link ‘Heightened alert’: Abortion providers brace for Supreme Court ruling

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