Target: Christine Quinn, New York City Council Speaker
Goal: Applaud New York City Council for protecting women seeking health services from protesters
New York City plans to start recruiting volunteers for a new program that provides women with escorts to help them safely access women’s health clinics without having to face harassment from protesters. There are currently laws in place that require anti-abortion protesters to stay a certain distance from the clinics, but many have been violating those restrictions.
While the rights of protesters should be protected, they are abusing those rights and preventing women from obtaining necessary medical services and potentially putting them in danger. The New York City Council should be commended for defending women’s safety and protecting the right to choose appropriate medical care.
Protesters have been known to verbally harass women and display signs that equate abortion with genocide. Some protesters have even physically blocked women from reaching the clinics in hopes of preventing abortions. Although the protesters see themselves as protecting lives by blocking clinic entrances, women get a variety of reproductive health services at the clinics and limiting their access could have serious consequences for their health.
Protesters have accused the council of taking sides by initiating the program, but the city is not taking a stance on abortion; it is simply doing its job by ensuring safe access to healthcare and preventing protesters from taking away women’s rights.
Anti-choice legislators and citizens around the country are working hard to restrict women’s healthcare options, and health centers have been forced to close or limit services in response to protesters turning women away. The government must guarantee that everyone has safe access to appropriate medical care and prevent any interference with that care. New York City deserves praise for looking out for women’s safety and protecting reproductive rights.
Dear Speaker Quinn,
Your health clinic escort program will allow women to obtain the medical care they need without being subjected to harassment from protesters. Protesters have been violating the laws that restrict their proximity to these health centers and it is the duty of a nonpartisan government to ensure that these violations do not infringe on the rights of others to access legal healthcare.
Without this program, protesters could become violent, as they have in other cities that do not provide women with this type of security. Additionally, the escorts will prevent more clinics from having to close or restrict their services as a result of protesters blocking women from entering.
Thank you for putting the health and safety of women first when so many other legislators around the country are allowing political and religious beliefs to interfere with the ability to protect their communities. I hope other cities will follow your lead in protecting women’s right to safely seek medical services.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: infowidget via Flickr.