Wednesday, January 20, 2010

SB 169 now a City of Wilmington Bill!

If you do not live within the city council districts of Wilmington, please ignore this message. If you do, THIS IS AN URGENT ALERT! Please see below for an important message from Ellen Barrose, from A Rose & A Prayer:
Temporarily thwarted in the state legislature, Planned Parenthood is now trying to get an anti-sidewalk counseling bill passed in the City of Wilmington. The bill, #3298, passed out of committee yesterday.

The vote is expected to be held in City Council Chambers next Thursday night, January 21st, on the eve of the March for Life in Washington, DC.

All our arguments against SB 169, the state bill, hold for the city bill. You can read the city bill below, or by clicking to the city's website here.

Unions are joining us in opposition to this bill. They agree that this is an enforcement issue, that any problems arising from this exercise of free speech rights can be appropriately handled by law enforcement. {UPDATE: The latest news is that the city has added an exemption for unions in this bill - further proving that this bill is aimed at pro-life sidewalk counselers at abortion clinics ONLY!}

Post-abortive women have told me that they wished that there had been a caring person outside the abortion clinic when they had their abortions to provide them with the information about alternatives to abortion that the clinic failed to provide.

We need to ensure that women who will seek an abortion in the future will have that help and support.

If you are a city resident, please call your City Council member and all the at-large council members today and ask them to vote NO on 3289. Contact information for City Council members is listed below. As usual, calls to their homes are most effective and are expected. Please call this weekend or early next week!

Please attend the City Council meeting at 6:00PM on Thursday, January 21st, to express your concern about this bill. If you intend to attend the meeting, please reply to this email so we can get a count. We ask that only city residents attend the meeting.

The city council meeting will be held in City Council Chambers at the Louis L. Redding Building, City/County Building, 800 French St., Wilmington.

Please click here to forward this message to everyone you know in the city who cares about women in crisis pregnancies. If you would like flyers to hand out to your neighbors, reply to this email, and we will let you know where you can pick them up.
Finally, if you have not yet called your state legislator, please do so today. They need to hear from you, as the bill is still alive in the House, and could be scheduled for hearings at any time.

Thank you for working so hard to protect the innocent and to support women in crisis.

Yours in Christ,
Ellen Barrosse
How to Identify and Contact Your City Council Member
To find out who your City Council member is, click here to find your home on the councilmanic maps.

Then go to the list below to find his or her home phone number.
Our elected representatives tell us that calls to them at home are most effective and are expected. Use the home phone number so you can speak directly to your council member this weekend or an evening next week.

When you call your council member at home, be courteous. Do not call too early in the morning or after 9:00 PM.

If you can't reach your council member at home or if you can't find out who your city council member is, call the city council main number, which is 576-2140.

An email is less effective, but is important if you can't get through to any of the numbers by phone.

Here is the list of council members with their contact information.

Office(Party) NameHome Phone
Email Address
Mayor(D) James M. Baker654-3608
City Council President(D) Norman D. Griffiths655-8084
City Council at Large(R) Michael A. Brown, Sr.655-5309
City Council at Large (D) Charles M. Freel984-2423
City Council at Large (D) Loretta Walsh656-9441
City Council at Large (D) Justen A. Wright275-7994
City Council Dist. 1(D) Charles Potter, Jr.762-8322
City Council Dist. 2(D) Ernest "Trippi" Congo,II384-7162
City Council Dist. 3(D) Stephanie T. Bolden428-1269
City Council Dist. 4(D) Hanifa G. N. Shabazz472-7481
City Council Dist. 5(D) Samuel Prado427-2103
City Council Dist. 6(D) Kevin F. Kelley, Sr.655-8321
City Council Dist. 7(D) Paul F. Ignudo, Jr.777-5327
City Council Dist. 8(D) Stephen L. Martelli420-0172
What to Say When You Call--Some Suggestions

Ask your City Council member and all the at-large members to vote NO on 3289.

Let him or her know that you support the right of people of faith to speak to women in crisis pregnancies, to share information about alternatives to abortion, and to pray for them.

If the council member tells you that Planned Parenthood is saying that some sidewalk counselors scare their staff, tell him or her that Planned Parenthood has the right and responsibility to protect its workers by getting injunctions against individuals to keep them away from the clinic.

If they haven't done this, it indicates one of two things:
  1. that they are more interested in stopping peaceful witness and sidewalk counseling than protecting their employees
  2. OR that they are exaggerating their concern.
Tell your the council member that this bill would also prevent unions from handing out materials in front of a hospital or even a drug store.

Tell the council member that you would like to receive a letter explaining how he or she voted.

Thank them for their time.
City Council Ordinance #3298

Sponsors: Public Safety Committee

Council Members Walsh, Congo, Prado, Martelli, Bolden, Brown


WHEREAS, the City Council recognizes that access to health care facilities for the purpose of obtaining medical counseling and treatment is imperative for the citizens of this city; and
WHEREAS, that the exercise of a person=s right to protest or counsel against certain medical procedures must be balanced against another person=s right to obtain medical counseling and treatment in an unobstructed manner; and
WHEREAS, that preventing the willful obstruction of a person=s access to medical counseling and treatment at a health care facility is a matter of citywide concern; and
WHEREAS, the City Council deems it necessary and proper for the purpose of public safety to enact legislation that prohibits a person from knowingly obstructing another person=s entry to or exit from a health care facility, while ensuring that the First Amendment rights of individuals to communicate their message to their intended audience is not impaired.


SECTION 1. Chapter 36 of the City Code is hereby amended by adding section 36-70 and adding the underlined language:.
Sec. 36-70 Obstructing Ingress to or Egress from a Health Care Facility.
a) A person is guilty of obstructing ingress to or egress from a health care facility when the person:
1) knowingly obstructs, detains, hinders, impedes or blocks another person=s entry to or exit from a health care facility; or
2) knowingly approaches another person, within eight feet of the person, unless such person consents, for the purpose of protest, education or counseling of such other person in the public right of way or area within a radius of one hundred feet from any entrance and exit door(s) of the health care facility.
b) For purposes of this section, a Ahealth care facility@ means any entity that is licensed, certified or otherwise authorized or permitted by law to administer medical treatment in the State of Delaware.
c) Obstructing ingress to or egress from a health care facility is a misdemeanor.
SECTION 2. This Ordinance shall become effective as of its date of passage by City Council and the Mayor.

SYNOPSIS: This ordinance amends Chapter 36 of the City Code by adding section 36-70, entitled Obstructing Ingress to or Egress from a Health Care Facility. This ordinance will make obstructing ingress to or egress from a health care facility, as defined by the ordinance, a misdemeanor.
Can't attend the City Council meeting?
If you cannot attend the council meeting, you can watch the proceedings live on WITN, Ch 22 at 6PM. The meeting will be replayed Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 2PM and 6PM. Make sure to let your council members know that you will be watching.

SB 169 in General Assembly
Additional information on SB 169, which is very similar to the city bill. The hearing mentioned below was postponed.

This Wednesday, January 13th, at 1:00 PM, in Delaware's General Assembly, the House Judiciary Committee will hold hearings on Senate Bill 169, which makes sidewalk counseling in front of abortion clinics illegal in Delaware.

SB 169 is aimed specifically at people of faith who prayerfully witness in front of abortion clinics and offer help to women in crisis pregnancies. It was written by the Delaware Attorney General's office at the request of Planned Parenthood of Delaware.

The bill makes it illegal to come within 8 feet of a woman in a crisis pregnancy for the purpose of "education or counseling" as she enters the clinic. Under SB 169, even a minister handing out a brochure about alternatives to abortion would be breaking the law.

Many women and children are helped by sidewalk counselors every year. We must demand that our legislators preserve our right to help women in desperate need.

When the Senate passed the bill last June, sponsors bypassed the requirement for public comment and held no committee hearing on the bill. Sponsors tried to do the same thing in the House, but your phone calls stopped it last summer.

Your phone calls can work again. Please call the House office as soon as possible and ask your legislator to vote NO on SB 169.

Many women are helped at the abortion clinic door by the people who pray and counsel there. Please call the House as soon as possible in the next two days to keep that resource available for women in crisis pregnancies.

Even if you have never prayed or counseled at an abortion clinic, and most of us have not, we must act now to protect the rights of people of faith who do.

Click here to forward this email to your friends. Their names will not be added to our mailing list unless they sign up themselves.

Finally, please pray for our representatives, our state, and the women and children in Delaware who are at risk in crisis pregnancies.

A message from Family Research Council

Amidst the Rubble, Planned Parenthood Looks Out for Itself

by Jeanne Monahan
January 19, 2010

During this moment in history when human beings, trapped under concrete slabs are calling out to be rescued; a day in which people who have miraculously survived the Haiti earthquake do not have enough water to continue living; during a time when the UN and US are sending thousands of security personnelfor fear of riots and a “deteriorating security situation,” International Planned Parenthood, the world’s largest abortion provider, is opportunistically responding to this humanitarian crisis by collecting donations for “Sexual & Reproductive Health Services” for the people of Haiti.

Note the following immediate health needs in Haiti, according to the World Health Organization (WHO): search and rescue of survivors trapped underneath rubble; treatment of people with major trauma injuries; preventing the infection of wounds; provision of clean water and sanitation. Somehow “abortion services” did not make the list. Planned Parenthood will objectify and manipulate any person or situation to advance their agenda.

As Haiti begins to recover and grieve one of the most deadly catastrophes ever (possibly 200,000 lives lost), and as the United States approaches the anniversary of Roe v. Wade on January 22 — a moment when 50,000,000 aborted children will be remembered — let us be clear that abortion is not health care. Not here in the United States, and not overseas.

[Editor's Note: Here are some organizations which are offering real help to Haiti]