Photo Credit: Dennis A. Clark
Anti-Choice Abortion Protesters Have Repeatedly Violated Federal, State, And Local Laws by blocking access to the Choices Women’s Medical Center and harassing patients, volunteers, and staff.
In a major victory for access to abortion services, New York’s top law enforcement officer has asked a federal judge for an injunction against anti-choice abortion protestors from blocking patient access to a reproductive health clinic, Choices Women’s Medical Center. Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman filed the federal lawsuit in Brooklyn Federal Court on June 20, 2017, to end the persistent harassment of patients seeking women’s reproductive services, citing multiple local, state, and federal laws.
Located in Queens, New York, Choices’ patients and staff alike have been subjected to unwanted physical contact, cyber-bullying, verbal abuse, and death threats because the clinic offers abortion services up to 24 weeks gestation. After a yearlong investigation detailing this menacing behavior, Schneiderman seeks to create a 16-foot “buffer zone” around the clinic and guarantee women the right to access necessary reproductive health care without obstruction.
“The tactics used to harass and menace Choices’ patients, families, volunteers, and staff are not only horrifying, but they’re also illegal,” Schneiderman said, describing how patients have been pinned against their cars, stalked, and threatened outside of the clinic. “The law guarantees women the right to control their own bodies and access the reproductive health care they need, without obstruction. We’ll do what it takes to protect those rights for women across New York.”
These attacks on women’s rights are nothing new to Choices Women’s Medical Center founder and CEO, Merle Hoffman. Her mission is to protect women’s fundamental rights to access federally-protected abortion services, as well as all reproductive healthcare services offered by the Choices clinic. Hoffman’s goal is to provide compassionate care during a difficult choice in a woman’s life to terminate a pregnancy and prevent further trauma from anti-choice protestors.
“I have been on the front lines of this struggle for women’s rights and women’s freedom for nearly 50 years,” Hoffman said. “I have endured bomb threats, death threats, multiple evictions, and the maiming and murder of colleagues and friends. And I am still here because I made a vow to my first patient and to myself — that I would always be there for women and girls who came to me for services. I stand with A.G. Schneiderman and his staff—and with all abortion providers and patients—to say that this injustice must stop.”
About Choice Women’s Medical Center
Choices Women’s Medical Center provides reproductive health services to women of all ages, gender identities, nationalities, and cultures with high-quality medical care. Since 1971, Choices has been wholly dedicated to women’s reproductive health services by offering all types of gynecological services, testing, treatment, prenatal healthcare, and abortion services up to 24 weeks gestation. We offer patients compassionate, nonjudgmental health care and convenient same-day appointments and walk-in appointments. To learn more, visit www.choicesmedical.com or call (718) 786-5000.