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News and commentary from the Pro-Life Action League
News and commentary from the Pro-Life Action League
Two days after an ambulance showed up at the Family Planning Associates (FPA) abortion facility in downtown Chicago on October 11, 2014 — two years ago today — the Pro-Life Action League submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to obtain the audio of the 911 call that requested the ambulance.
Although the Pro-Life Action League and other pro-life organizations routinely submit FOIA requests for 911 calls made to abortion clinics and have no problems obtaining them, the City of Chicago denied our request.
Our attorneys at the Thomas More Society (TMS) appealed our denial to the Public Access Counselor of the Office of the Illinois Attorney General, which eventually determined there was “no clear and convincing evidence” for denying the release of the 911 calls. Still, the City of Chicago refused to comply with the Public Access Counselor’s judgment, which the City maintained was “non-binding.”
That meant our only remaining recourse was to sue [PDF], which we did on May 19. And realizing that they don’t have a leg to stand on, the City’s lawyers finally released the audio of that chilling 911 call, which we are making public for the first time in the video above. [Continue reading …]
PLAL founder Joe Scheidler talks to WBEZ’s Dan Weissman outside Chicago Planned Parenthood [Photo by John Jansen]
In our previous article about yesterday’s press conference and protest held outside Planned Parenthood’s Near North abortion facility in support of our lawsuit against Chicago’s “bubble zone” ordinance, we said that this case was sure to receive a great deal of media attention.
And, indeed, it already has.
Here is a partial list of news stories covering the lawsuit that have appeared in the past 24 hours:
See also the video below by Armando Sanchez of the Chicago Tribune, which includes remarks by Pro-Life Action League vice president Ann Scheidler and volunteer sidewalk counselor Veronica Price: [Continue reading …]
Today the Thomas More Society filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Pro-Life Action League that seeks to overturn the City of Chicago’s hopelessly confusing “bubble zone” law, which has grossly infringed on the rights of pro-life sidewalk counselors to reach out to abortion-bound mothers since it was enacted in 2009.
To help launch this lawsuit, the League held a noon press conference and protest outside Planned Parenthood’s Near North abortion facility near downtown Chicago, which was attended by dozens of grassroots pro-life activists holding signs reading, “Protect Free Speech” and “No Bubble Zone.” [Continue reading …]
Next Tuesday, the Pro-Life Action League is filing a lawsuit against the City of Chicago over the unjust “Bubble Zone” law that has been making it harder for pro-life sidewalk counselors to reach abortion-bound mothers for nearly seven years.
The law makes it illegal to approach within eight feet of someone walking towards an abortion clinic without their consent, once they’re within 50 feet of the entrance.
Sound confusing? That’s because it is. This law was designed to be confusing, and the Chicago police have been misapplying it from Day One, and it’s caused endless problems for our faithful sidewalk counselors.
Pro-Life Action League staff and volunteers have been carefully gathering evidence of First Amendment violations by police wrongly applying the Bubble Zone ordinance, and now our attorneys at the Thomas More Society are ready to go to court.
To draw media attention to this important case, we’re holding a protest and press conference outside Planned Parenthood on Chicago’s north side on Tuesday. [Continue reading …]
Today Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed into law SB 1564, which will force medical personnel and pro-life pregnancy resource centers to refer their patients for abortion and to discuss the “benefits” of abortion with them, in spite of the fact that for all pro-life pregnancy centers and for many doctors and other medical professionals doing so is in direct conflict with their consciences.
Gov. Rauner had promised during his campaign for office that he would steer clear of social issues. We knew he was not with us on abortion, but we trusted that he would not undermine efforts to protect conscience rights and to enact measures that ensured the safety of women. Not one Republican voted for this anti-conscience bill. Sadly, Rauner has chosen to side with the pro-abortion Democrats in Springfield rather than his own party.
The pro-life movement in Illinois mounted a massive phone, email and letter writing campaign urging Rauner to veto SB 1564, while Planned Parenthood and its pro-abortion cronies ran their own campaign to get him to sign the bill into law. Evidently, Rauner would rather cater to the nation’s largest abortion chain than stand with his own party and the pro-lifers who believed him when he ran for governor.
This is sad and tragic news. It will result in lawsuits filed against the State of Illinois, which is in a dismal financial state and can ill afford to take on unnecessary legal battles. The medical professionals in the state of Illinois deserve to practice their healing art and have their freedom of conscience respected. The pro-life pregnancy centers should be protected from giving exactly the advice that goes against everything they stand for. They will not do it.
This morning the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-3 that a Texas law restricting abortion clinics was unconstitutional.
In response, Pro-Life Action League executive director Eric Scheidler issued the following statement:
It is shameful to see a majority of the Supreme Court sacrificing public health and safety to prop up the abortion industry in Texas. If this case were about anything other than abortion, this law would have been upheld. Indeed, it would never have been challenged. Only the abortion industry balks at adhering to the same standards considered routine by legitimate health care providers.
How many Kermit Gosnells will it take for public officials to uphold common sense health and safety standards for the abortion industry? In the wake of this irresponsible ruling in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, pro-life activists will be redoubling our efforts to highlight the dangerous conditions at America’s abortion clinics — like the ambulances we see turning up regularly at abortion clinics around the country — in hopes that one day the abortion industry will be held accountable for endangering public health.
A few days later, Eric recorded this video outside the Planned Parenthood in Aurora, Illinois, one of the largest abortion facilities in the country, with some thoughts on where to go from here in the wake of Monday’s decision:
Yesterday, Pro-Life Action League executive director Eric Scheidler attended a large meeting of conservative Christian leaders and presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump in New York City.
Upon returning to his home in Aurora, Illinois, Eric recorded this video reflection on how Mr. Trump addressed his primary concerns as a pro-life activist, for whom abortion is the central electoral issue:
Yesterday, the Illinois House of Representatives narrowly passed SB 1564, a pernicious piece of legislation that would force pro-life doctors and pregnancy centers to refer for abortion.
We’ve been fighting this bill for over two years. You’ve probably made calls to your State Representative trying to stop it. But all is not lost!
The bill now goes to Governor Bruce Rauner’s desk. If, like me, you live in Illinois, I’m asking you to reach out to the governor in two ways today:
We need to pull out all the stops this time, so please call both offices and say: [Continue reading …]
On June 28, 2014 — nearly two years ago — pro-life sidewalk counselors outside the American Women’s Medical Center abortion facility in Chicago witnessed a woman being transported into an Chicago Fire Department ambulance.
The following week, they sent pictures of the ambulance to the Pro-Life Action League, and I submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to obtain the audio of the 911 call that requested the ambulance.
Although the Pro-Life Action League and other pro-life organizations routinely submit FOIA requests for 911 calls made to abortion clinics and have no problems obtaining them, the City of Chicago denied the request, citing federal HIPAA law.
A few months later, on October 11, 2014, pro-life sidewalk counselors outside the Family Planning Associates abortion facility in downtown Chicago witnessed a woman being transported into an ambulance:
Pepsi is exempt from Obamacare’s HHS Mandate. So are other large corporations, including Exxon and Chevron.
But not the Little Sisters of the Poor. Their consciences notwithstanding, they’re still required to comply with the mandate’s requirement to provide contraception, sterilization, and abortion-inducing drugs to their employees.
In a pathetic attempt to extend an olive branch, the Obama Administration offered the Little Sisters an “accommodation” under which they could fill out a form noting their objection, which would then shift the coverage obligation to their insurance companies.
But this accommodation is a sham, because it still requires religious non-profits like the Little Sisters of the Poor to cooperate in a process that results in coverage of morally objectionable drugs and devices for their employee health plans. So the Little Sisters filed suit against the federal government, and their case will be heard at the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday, March 23.
On this date—four years to the day after the first series of nationwide Stand Up for Religious Freedom rallies spearheaded by the Pro-Life Action League in opposition to the HHS Mandate—the League is co-sponsoring prayer vigils outside both of the Little Sisters’ facilities in the Chicago area while oral arguments are being heard in our nation’s capital. [Continue reading …]