LOUISVILLE (KT) – A Metro Council member is filing an ordinance that would provide a 10-foot-wide buffer zone to separate patients from pro-life supporters at a Louisville abortion clinic.
Metro Council member Cassie Chambers Armstrong announced she is filing the ordinance to create the safety zone.
“It turns down the temperature and it gives police a tool to regulate unsafe conduct and most importantly, it doesn’t violate anyone’s right to free speech,” Armstrong said Monday during a press conference at the EMW Women’s Surgical Center.
Last August, a similar ordinance fell, 13-12, with votes going along party lines. A new council makeup and some recent incidents at the clinic could make it more likely to pass this time around, Armstrong said.
Addia Wuchner, the executive director of Kentucky Right to Life, said the motive of those proposing the ordinance is obvious to her, with public safety concerns not being the main reason they want it in place.
Pro-life supporters say escorts and abortion-rights activists often make their behavior seem worse than actually happens. They pray and pass out literature and try to get the patients in a conversation about abortion. And they also save lives, says Dr. Todd Gray, the executive director-treasurer of the Kentucky Baptist Convention.
“Pro-life supporters who show up at the Louisville abortion clinic do so out of a place of love for the unborn and compassion for those about to make a horrible and irreversible decision,” Gray said. “Lives have been saved because of sidewalk counselors who understand the pressure a desperate woman, or family, may be feeling.
“Most of those who are coming for abortion are doing so because they feel there is no other option, but the pro-life volunteers are there to show them there is a better way,” Gray said. “The vast majority of the pro-life supporters are respectful, compassionate, caring people who are there to pray and make sure that individuals and families are aware that abortion is not their only option.”