For Immediate Release
National Right to Life, partnered with many pro-life and human rights organizations, sent a letter last week to urge President Trump to educate the Congress on the killer provisions found in the current draft of the Shaheen Amendment to our State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs appropriations bill.
"Remove the language that requires funds to be siphoned to so-called "international family planning," said C.J. Williams of Mass. Citizens for Life, in wake of the letter's drafting.
“The Shaheen amendment would weaken the Trump Administration’s Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance (PLGHA) policy as well as other administration initiatives protecting life,” stated Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life. “This amendment is anti-life and would jeopardize this administration’s efforts to protect life both here and abroad.”
National Right to Life states that the Shaheen amendment would increase money for this controversal "international family planning” from $575 million to 632.55 million. In the letter, the organizations noted that “more money for this earmark exploits an aspect of the PLGHA that allows this account to serve as a taxpayer-funded supplemental for U.S.-based NGOs that actively promote abortions overseas.”
“The Shaheen amendment is a blatant attempt to impose pro-abortion policies and earmarks. It also violates the Bipartisan Budget Agreement for Fiscal Years 2020 and 2021 by adding this poison pill and increasing spending levels,” stated Tobias. “National Right to Life, along with several other pro-life organizations, urges President Trump to tell Congress to reject the Shaheen amendment.”
The State House news reported on our delivery of thousands of petitions opposing the ROE Act today.
ROE Act Opponents Visit Judiciary Committee
ROE Act opponents visited the Judiciary Committee Thursday to deliver signatures from people opposed to the bill, which was the subject of a long public hearing in June. Massachusetts Citizens for Life claims the bill (S 1209 / H 3320) would lower standards of care for women by permitting certain abortions to be undertaken outside of hospital settings. The bill's critics also oppose its changes to parental consent. The ROE Act, backed by a large coalition, eliminates parental consent requirements for teens seeking an abortion, allows abortions after 24 weeks to protect the physical or mental health of a patient, or in cases of diagnosed lethal fetal anomalies, and includes abortion in the pregnancy-related safety net coverage for residents ineligible for MassHealth. C.J. Williams of Mass. Citizens for Life said she turned in 1,654 signatures to Judiciary Committee counsel Jim McCarthy, and new digital signatures were still landing in her email inbox while she stood in the office around 3:20 p.m. ROE Act supporters were also on Beacon Hill Thursday for an advocacy training hosted by NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts. Williams said she hoped to run into them and "have a conversation," but did not encounter any backers of the bill.
- Michael P. Norton/SHNS
“DON’T PROMOTE ACCESS TO ABORTION OVER ACCESS TO LIFE-SAVING CARE”
MCFL TO DELIVER FIRST BATCH OF CITIZEN PETITIONS OPPOSING EXTREME ROE ACT
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- 14 November 2019, Boston, MA --Massachusetts Citizens for Life (MCLF) will deliver the first batch of online petition signatures in opposition to the “R.O.E.” Act today, Nov. 14, 3PM, on Beacon Hill, following the mobilization of hundreds of its members opposing the bill at the June 17th public hearing.
This proposed law (S1209/H3320) is set to lower the standards of medical care for women, as a class, if its provision allowing multi-day late-term abortion procures outside of hospitals is voted in.
“The “R.O.E” Act does not represent the needs of Massachusetts women,” says expert injury attorney, Mike Seibel, “How do I know? I’ve spent the last multiple years defending women injured by our deregulation and promotion of abortion in New Mexico. If you were to adopt the ROE Act in MA, you’d get what we have in New Mexico. What’s going to happen to your women is that they will lose the protections provided by hospitals and nationwide standards of medical care.
“Late term induction abortion outside of a hospital setting is against what even NARAL’s expert witnesses, such as Dr. Mark Nicchols, have testified to in multiple states..courts in KS, KY, TX, AK, VA have affirmed that late term induction abortion must be done in a hospital setting or women suffer injury and death.“
Mike’s client’s daughter, Keisha Atkins, died because of the laws promoting access over safety standards in New Mexico.
“The “R.O.E.” Act promotes abortion access, but denies women access to the medical equipment and expertise that is life-saving in risky situations,” says C.J. Williams, MCFL’s director of community engagement, “That’s not an empowerment of women. That’s a degradation of women.”
Additionally, the ROE Act would deny protections for infants born alive, and remove parental consent, and adult protections for a 13 year old girl entering an abortion
“If you pass the ROE ACT, you’ll follow New Mexico,” Mike Seibel adds, “And 17 women in the last 4 years have had major medical injury and been transferred to the the ER because of it in my state -- with, to name just a few --ncontrolled bleeding; inability to find blood pressure; severe infection; cardiac arrest.”
MCFL is calling on citizens from every end of the political spectrum to join in the delivery, and to write legislators asking them to oppose “R.O.E.” and:
- Ensure 12P stays in current law so our infants who survive abortions get the care all citizens deserve.
- Inform them that multi-day late-term abortions are too dangerous to be performed outside MA hospitals (indisputably the best hospitals in the world).
- Tell Judiciary Committee Chair and Vice Chair, Day and Cronin that we don't want our 13-year-old daughter to be on her own in an abortion clinic.
- Tell the Judiciary Committee that elective abortions on viable infants for any reason is not the mark of a humane or just society.
“Tell them Massachusetts MUST do better than the”R.O.E.” Act,” says MCFL President, Myrna Maloney Flynn, “For all of our citizens: Our women, our infants, and our daughters.”
For more information, comment, or to get involved:
by Attorney Mike Seibel
[ Do you do whatever it takes? Do you know what that looks like? Mike reflects on the love in action that is the cornerstone of being pro-life. ]
I just walked by a dresser in the other room. It’s old and beat up. I have had it since I was a kid. It probably needs to go. But I just can’t get rid of it. It connects my past to the present I remember that day when I was 5 or 6 when it was bought.
You see my parents are pro life When I was young my parents took a woman into our home who was experiencing a crisis pregnancy. It was the first Years after ROE. This woman needed a place to stay and the love of a family. I remember sneaking down to hear the discussions between my mom and dad As I listened, they agreed to do what ever it took to save the baby. They decided to make her comfortable and bought a beautiful dresser for the room.
The woman stayed in the room during her pregnancy. She and I cease friends as she would often babysit she would let me feel the baby kick. She treated me like a little brother. She eventually gave birth to the child and he was adopted. She moved out and the dresser became mine. Even though there were other women who moved in with us, I have always kept the dresser.
I was and still am impressed by my parents. They did what ever it took to save a life. Bringing a woman into our home, feeding her and giving her a place to live. Growing up with an experience like that, how could anyone not be pro-life?
My parents did whatever it took. I look to the pro-life movement today and the stories of that are few and far between. With 75 percent of the abortions being poverty related, our pro-life movement rarely takes a young woman into their household and surrounds them with family in the months leading up to their birth.. Instead as pro-lifers we may rely on the welfare system rather than taking them into our homes. I don’t know the reason. But maybe we should consider that. Maybe we should, as a movement, think about doing what ever it takes to save a life. Giving of our time and treasures to help someone who doesn’t quite know what to do.
Instead of being judgmental and saying, “she should have kept her legs closed,” be more accepting and say, “what can I do to help?” Maybe we should try to do what Christ taught us and give our time, money, and treasures helping someone in need. Laying down a little bit of our life for our friends is what we were meant to do. Lay down a little bit of our life to help save another.
I don’t think I will ever get rid of that old beat up dresser. It’s a symbol of what is good and right with this world. It’s a symbol of the sacrifice that my parents taught me and tried to teach others. It’s a symbol for me...to do Whatever it takes to save one life.
Seibel is a practicing attorney in New Mexico, who by his own profession "will never be one of those lawyers who work in the Supreme Court or have big Manhattan law offices". He has spent his career advocating for the least in the society. He is currently working tirelessly to protect women, and their unborn children by prosecuting Dr. Curtis Boyd, and his outpatient abortion facility, in the death of Keisha Atkins, and other women.
By Myrna Maloney Flynn, MCFL President
Not flesh of my flesh, nor bone of my bone, but still miraculously my own. Never forget for a single minute, you didn’t grow under my heart but in it. -- Fleur Conkling Heyliger
Some might be over the platform, but I still appreciate Facebook. I doubt I’ll ever find much value in seeing photos of your dinner, but I do get a kick out of toddler antics—OK, really anyone’s antics, as long as they’re clever enough to make me LOL. There aren’t enough reasons to laugh out loud these days. I’ve got to give it to Mark Zuckerberg for presenting them. (Now we just need to convince Zuck to divert some of his company's earnings toward pro-life causes.)
Last spring, I found myself captivated by a Facebook friend's frequent posts. I'd lost track of most of what he'd been up to since junior high, but it was apparent from his updates that he and his wife were going through the arduous ordeal of adopting a child.
It wasn’t a smooth process or a swift one. Some posts revealed the couple's vulnerabilities, fears, and their many anxieties. Other updates announced milestones and sequential challenges they'd gleefully overcome. From what I could tell, the two spent close to two years as hopeful adoptive parents, making their way through "the system."
In August, they finally travelled to South Korea and visited the same agency from which my friend himself had been adopted. That week, hundreds of us back here in the States tuned in daily for what had become the best reality show ever. We followed my friend and his wife through airports, landmarks, and, finally, into a play area where we got our first look at their son.
Facebook's ubiquitous blue "thumbs-up" icon that my friend had been receiving on each post swept exclusively to red hearts as two became three, and we all got to welcome Hudson into a family. My friend snapped the picture above as they headed back to their hotel to prepare for the long trip home. My friend's simple caption to his photo: "Success!"
As you may know, November is National Adoption Month, which falls appropriately on the heels of October’s Respect Life messaging. My purpose today isn’t necessarily to encourage you to adopt a child. But I would ask that we each listen for what may be a call to consider it or to go out of our way to support someone who is. Adoption by Choice is one local agency to know about.
If you are aware of someone facing an unexpected pregnancy, point her to MCFL’s website, where she can find supportive statewide resources. While not adoption agencies themselves, they will refer women who seek adoptionfor their baby to reputable, life-affirming, organizations.
Here's to those who have responded to the call to adopt. Here's to heroic women who so bravely give their babies life and opportunities. And here's to the men and women who help to make "the system" work, those who make it a success.
Your update on the critical drive to stop taxpayer funding of abortion in Massachusetts. For more in-depth reporting, see the previous year's write up by our past communications team at this link.
The signature drive has taken Massachusetts by storm. If you haven't seen a signature gatherer in your community, how about becoming that signature collector?
- Massachusetts taxpayers spend $1.7 million each year on abortions and over $200 million since 1981
But we don't have to fund abortion in our state.
We now have just 2 weeks to finish collecting signatures and reach the goal number. Sign up here to volunteer.
The campaign is still asking citizens who have volunteered to set a goal of collecting 75 signatures a week. Along with collecting signatures during the weekend, we're also asking that you dedicate 3+ hours this and next week to gathering those "John Hancocks" at your local YMCA, supermarket, or church.
Have you already been beating the bushes to get this life-saving provision on the ballot? You can find instructions for turning signatures in to city and town halls, by clicking HERE. If you have already turned in your signatures to the Town or City Clerk, and they are ready to pick up, the instructions for picking up certified signature are HERE.
The campaign is also looking for drivers in preparation for taking completed signature sheets to and from Town Clerks. Please contact the Field Director for your area if you can volunteer.
Current list of field directors:
Joshua Tavares (Bristol and Barnstable Counties):
Robert Aufiero (Essex, part of Middlesex, Suffolk Counties):
Steve Fruzzetti (Part of Boston, Norfolk, Plymouth Counties):
Kathy Lynch (Middlesex, Worcester Counties, Western MA):
Interested in organizing long-term and for continued action after the drive? Sign up today to receive information on your nearest MCFL chapter, and join the movement to protect human lives at every stage in Massachusetts.
When Stacey Dash began her presentation to our full banquet hall, Thursday night on October 24th, no one knew what was coming. To say we received the gritty and decisive image of courageous love in action would be an understatement.
She did not toss off slogans. She didn't even take the easy route of talking about her challenges working in Hollywood as an African-American, pro-life woman.
She looked us in the eye, and gave us the gift of her story.
Stacey Dash: "I pulled the IV out of my arm and started screaming I'm keeping my baby! My doctor calmed me...Let’s look and see to make sure everything is ok, he told me... I saw the ultrasound. I saw my son’s heartbeat.
"He is 29 now. And that is all I have to say about what happened to bring me here to you today."
This next year, she can be seen on screen as a similarly courageous woman (if in different circumstances): our own Dr. Mildred Jefferson, the first African-American woman to graduate from Harvard Medical School.
Jefferson remains one of the most consistent, intelligent, and clear advocates for human life in our history.
We'd love to share Stacey's full speech with those of you who have supported our mission to protect human life this year in our Commonwealth. If you could not attend but would still like to be included in the legacy of those who have given to end abortion and violence against our vulnerable in Massachusetts, you can still make a secure donation here.
MCFL's Director of Community Engagement, CJ Williams (Left), with Cathy Weikert (Center), and Host of Life Matters TV, Brendan O'Connell (Right)
Chairman of the Board, Dr. Franks (Left), talks ambitious plans for pro-life action this year with MCFL member Dustin Labreche (Right)
Chairman of the Board, Dr. Franks (Left), Stacey Dash, keynote speaker (Center), and MCFL President, Myrna Maloney Flynn (Right).
Set...for life.Read more
In New Mexico, the proposed removal of late term abortion procedures from the hospital setting made by the "R.O.E." Act in Massachusetts is already law. This reduction in standards of care has proved fatal for Keisha Atkins, and deadly or injurious to nearly 25 other women.
By Leslie Palma
Priests for Life Director of Communications
It’s heartbreaking to imagine the last day in the life of Keisha Atkins, a 23-year-old woman who died following a legal abortion, at six months, in New Mexico.
“In our last conversation in the hospital, she said, ‘Mom, I’m going to die,’” recalled Keisha’s mom, Tina Atkins. “And I said, ‘Don’t talk like that, you’re going to be fine.’”
Soon after that, Keisha was taken to the operating room, and Tina never saw her alive again.
Tina described her daughter as “a beautiful, exuberant young lady,” who loved the outdoors and karaoke singing, going to concerts with her mom and just hanging out with family.
“We just had a great life and all of a sudden, it was gone,” Tina said.
The family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the late-term abortion business that started the abortion and the hospital where she died.
“They messed with the wrong black woman, because I am not going to step down,” Tina said during an interview with Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, and Alveda King, director of Civil Rights for the Unborn for Priests for Life. Tina has testified before the New Mexico Legislature and is hoping to talk to President Trump about abortions that are killing women and their children.
“This is a tragedy,” Father Pavone said. “It’s so important to be speaking out about this.”
KEISHA’S ABORTION EXPERIENCE
Keisha went to the University of New Mexico (UNM) twice, on Jan. 23 and Jan. 30, 2017, seeking an abortion. She was given an ultrasound but was ultimately turned away from the hospital and referred to Southwestern Women’s Options, an Albuquerque business that performs third-trimester abortions on healthy babies growing in the wombs of healthy mothers. The UNM staff made the appointment at Southwestern for her. The two businesses often collaborate, both in the training of abortionists and, until last year, in the transfer of body parts harvested from aborted babies.
On Feb. 1, Keisha went to Southwestern, where her baby girl received a shot of digoxin to stop her heart and laminaria were inserted in Keisha’s cervix to begin the dilation process that would, if all went according to plan, result in Keisha delivering her stillborn daughter two or three days later.
Keisha signed consent forms and was instructed, in writing, that if she experienced any problems, she should not call 911 or go to an emergency room, but should just call Southwestern. She was sent home.
Feb. 2, she returned to Southwestern to have the laminaria replaced and was sent home again. Late that night, at about 11 p.m., she called Southwestern to say she was having trouble breathing and experiencing abdominal pain. Tina was with her when she made that call and remembers that Keisha was instructed not to call 911 but just to get to the clinic in the morning.
“I stayed with her all night,” Tina said. “She was in so much pain.”
On Feb. 3, Keisha arrived at Southwestern at 6:45 a.m. with a high fever and experiencing shortness of breath. Her physical symptoms did not improve through the course of that long day.
“That day was horrible,” Tina said. “I was in the waiting room and they finally let me see her for a minute at 2:30 p.m.” Keisha was on oxygen and had a high fever, her mother said.
At 4:08 p.m., almost nine and a half hours after Keisha had arrived at Southwestern, an ambulance finally was called. The abortion was not performed because she was too ill.
Keisha was admitted to the Emergency Room at UNM at 4:53 p.m. Tina remained with her until just before she was taken to the operating room at 10:29 p.m. for a “dilation and evacuation” abortion of her dead baby. That would entail repeatedly inserting forceps into Keisha’s uterus to remove her daughter piece by piece.
On the operating table, Keisha went into cardiac arrest and was declared dead at 12:10 a.m. Feb. 4.
Eventually the remains of Keisha’s baby, whom she had named Mavis, were reunited with Keisha’s body. They were cremated and their ashes, together in one urn, are with Tina.
“I miss my baby,” Tina said. “She should be here with me right now, and my grandbaby.” Mavis would be 2 years old.
Keisha’s sister, Nicole, also had an abortion at Southwestern and suffered complications so serious, she had to have a hysterectomy. She would advise any woman considering abortion to make another choice.
“This has impacted me and my family in ways you could not imagine,” Nicole said. “It has a tremendous amount of loss involved and I wish I had never done it.”
Tina and Nicole both wish Keisha had never set foot inside Southwestern.
WHAT WENT WRONG?
An autopsy performed by UNM’s Dr. Lauren Dvorscak concluded that Keisha died of a pregnancy-related pulmonary embolism - a blood clot in the lungs. The death was listed as “natural” and the autopsy report noted that “pulmonary embolism is the 6th leading cause of maternal mortality in the United States.”
But according to email transcripts obtained by Albuquerque attorney Michael Seibel, who last year filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Southwestern and UNM, some of the hospital’s medical staff were skeptical that it was really a pulmonary embolism that killed Keisha.
The autopsy report noted that Keisha “also had a high white blood cell count and other clinical features concerning for sepsis upon her hospital admission.” Keisha’s family believes that sepsis, a widespread infection, is what killed her.
Some hospital staffers seem to agree.
In an email dated July 20, 2017, Dr. Trenton Wray, an assistant professor of emergency medicine at the University of New Mexico Hospital, who was one of the physicians who treated Keisha, said: “Everything about her course was consistent with septic abortion … I have to admit, I was floored by the cause of death being a massive PE.”
Wray was asking for an opinion from Dr. Gary Hatch, a diagnostic radiology specialist, who responded:
“The autopsy report doesn’t make sense to me. Who did the autopsy?” Hatch also insisted “there was no massive PE at the time of the CPTA. Period.”
CPTA stands for computed pulmonary arteriogram, a test that would have detected a pulmonary embolism.
In a subsequent email to Lisa Hofler, who was primarily in charge of Keisha’s treatment in the emergency room, Wray said: “My personal opinion on it is that she had septic cardiomyopathy.”
In an email exchange between Dvorscak, who performed the autopsy, and Hatch, Keisha’s infection was mentioned again.
“I agree that everything makes sense for sepsis, and I’m not denying that she was septic and going through a septic abortion,” Dvorscak wrote.
In his response, Hatch asked: “Could a potential sequence here be PE due to DIC due to sepsis due to endometrial infection?”
DIC stands for disseminated intravascular coagulation, a dangerous blood condition that can lead to hemorrhaging. Retention of a dead fetus is one potential cause of DIC.
“I think the scenario you outlined is entirely plausible,” Dvorscak replied, “that everything may have been sort of a sequence from her underlying infection.”
A month after these email exchanges, on Aug. 23, 2017, the Albuquerque Journal ran a story under the headline “Autopsy Rules Out Abortion as Cause of Death.”
In the story, New Mexico Chief Medical Investigator Dr. Kurt Nolte called Keisha’s death “a rare and tragic case for the family.” Southwestern, in a statement, said “All of us … are heartbroken by her death. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family.”
The Southwestern statement went on to berate pro-lifers who were trying to learn the truth about the death of a healthy 23-year-old during the abortion of her healthy baby:
“For those who oppose women’s reproductive justice to exploit this sad event by putting forth lies about abortion and the patient’s care is sickening.”
Tina Atkins has a different take on what’s sickening about this situation.
“These late-term abortions are killing our children, our mothers, our daughters,” she said. “And they’re just getting away with it. I wanted to raise my grandbaby. I can’t even do that now because I don’t have either one of them here.”
Another set of emails sent two days after the Journal story was published brought up another discrepancy.
Remember that UNM turned Keisha away when she went there seeking an abortion, instead sending her to Southwestern for an elective abortion of her six-month fetus. That makes it curious for Eve Espey, chairwoman of UNM’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, to write: “… would you be willing to remove the word ‘elective’ – she qualifies under New Mexico’s definition of ‘medically indicated’ but I would suggest just saying ‘abortion.’ “
If her abortion was medically indicated, why was Keisha sent to an abortion business that, according to files collected by Seibel, had no emergency equipment on hand and whose doctors did not have hospital admitting privileges?
That’s just one of the many questions Keisha’s family want answered when the case is heard in December 2020.
They will also want to know why Southwestern waited more than nine hours before transferring her to the hospital, and why UNM waited more than five hours before sending her to an operating room to remove Keisha’s baby, who had been dead for about 60 hours at that point.
They would like the truth about the cause of death to come out – was it really a pulmonary embolism, or, as their lawsuit contends, did she die due to a septic infection that was overlooked until it was too late?
They want to know if, with better care, Keisha might have lived.
Keisha’s family, working with Elisa Martinez, executive director of the New Mexico Alliance for Life and a candidate for the U.S. Senate, also want to ensure that no more women die from abortion.
Noting that even literature supplied to Keisha at Southwestern said the risks of later abortions were much greater than those performed early in pregnancy, Ms. Martinez said: “This is why we have to put an end to barbaric late-term abortion. There are too many women in who are being lied to. We need this story to get out.”
Why young women, particularly women of color, continue to die from legal abortion is beyond the scope of the lawsuit, but it’s a question that needs an answer, especially as late-term abortion spreads to states like New York, Massachusetts, Illinois and Vermont.
“So many of the details sound so tragically similar,” Father Pavone told Tina and Nicole Atkins. “Not only are we praying for you, but we are going to work side by side with you to make sure this tragic loss will not be in vain. We’re going to save more lives as a result.”
press conference and annual State House Celebration of Life this Wednesday
Massachusetts Citizens for Life and partner organizations to illustrate dangerous impact of proposed ROE Act.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - BOSTON, MA - 28 October, 2019 - During the Celebration of Life, an annual lobby day that highlights holistic and life-affirming resources for women and children, Massachusetts Citizens for Life invites media to a press conference at noon on Wednesday, October 30th. National experts from a broad spectrum of political backgrounds, including abortion survivor, Claire Culwell, will speak on the impact of provisions in the ROE ACT(S.1209/H.3320).
Great Hall, Massachusetts State House
Press Conference: 12:00 noon - 1:00pm
Celebration of Life Event: 10:00am - 3:00pm
C.J. Williams, Director of Community Engagement, MCFL: "Massachusetts can do much better than a bill that ditches basic standards of medical care in favor of a burnt-earth push for abortion access over women's safety. In no other medical procedure do we reduce regulations and safety- it's backward. In this case, it uniquely discriminates against women."
Regarding a weeklong campaign launched by MassNARAL that claims, "Massachusetts can do better," MCFL President Myrna Maloney Flynn said, "I agree 100% with NARAL. Massachusetts can do better. But the so-called ROE Act wi make things worse. Instead, let's start talking about prevention, about the facts of fetal development, the effect abortion has on a woman's long-term mental health, adoption, and, especially, universal childcare programs like the one Senator Warren proposes," she said. "That's doing better."
Bill Gilmeister, executive director of RenewMass, said, regarding the showcasing of resource centers, "Pregnancy health centers offer a positive response to pregnant women in difficult circumstances. They provide the resources women need when experiencing tough pregnancies. They are willing to come alongside in support. This is in stark contrast to the abortion businesses that seek to profit from women in need.”
New Mexico attorney Mike Seibel will speak to reporters in the Great Hall Wednesday. Siebel is currently prosecuting the outpatient abortion facility on behalf of his client, mother of Keisha Atkins, who was killed by the deregulation of late-term abortion procedures in New Mexico, the same kind of provision that "R.O.E.” would permit in Massachusetts.
Seibel said, "Massachusetts may take late-term abortion out of hospitals and away from life-saving medical equipment. Let [New Mexico] be a lesson for Massachusetts. You pass that bill, and there will be transports to hospitals for uncontrolled bleeding, uterine rupture, sepsis . . . just like here in New Mexico. Massachusetts will devolve from its first-class status in healthcare to substandard care. There will be deaths just like those in New Mexico."
Depositions, testimony, and other legal documents will be available to press following the speakers’ statements, as will activist and abortion survivor Claire Culwell.
Director of Community Engagement
Massachusetts Citizens for Life
857 302 0466
Are you a concerned citizen or MCFL member? Do you have the resource, but maybe not the ability or energy to spend time or travel to engage in the activism and education MCFL facilitates?
You can still support our work.
To support our digital and local action campaigns to shelve this anti-life bill, you can donate now. Just click through our secure links here: Donate to MCFL.
But what do I do?
You're standing outside the abortion center, and pedestrians pour past. A girl hops out of an Uber, and brushes by, and in a second has vanished behind the glass doors and the sign that says Abortion care offered here.
Or maybe you're not even there, but sitting with your hand hovering over the mouse, your computer screen flickering the schedule for 40 Days for Life volunteers. What if you sign up for 4pm. What then?
What does she need you to do?
The fact is, it isn't complicated. The answer is love, and that looks like the simple step of showing up, speaking up, and asking a question.
1) Start with a "Hi," and introduce yourself.
2) Ask her a question.
3) Ask if she's been there before, and mention if you or a friend has.
One of the best lists of more detailed suggestions comes from the Sisters of Life.
Read them below, and then suit up and show up. Your standing up on the sidewalk will save lives. (Suggestions below are adapted from an article originally printed in Imprint, 2019)
Listen: Often, everyone else is telling her what to do, but no one is listen- ing. So first, listen. Listen to her story, her experiences, her fears, hopes, worries, and desires.
Notice: She is good. Let yourself be honestly, spontaneously in touch with her -- her personality, her presence. Meet her.
Reflect: As you listen, reflect back to her what you are seeing and hear- ing: what she is saying, yes, but also her own value and goodness. She is not a project. She is not someone or something to "be good to" and "fix." In this situation especially, she needs to see that she's worth it, just for being herself. We all do. Not for what she's done, will do, hasn't done. Not for her education, looks or gifts, but for herself. A woman who knows that she is cared for and loved can do anything.
Connect: We are not meant to be alone. She needs a friend who will put faith in her and who will commit to walking with her in overcoming the obstacles, interiorly and exteriorly. This act of unconditional acceptance from you allows her to choose her own flourishing, for herself and for her child. It’s what opens her up to living from her heart.
Over 70% of women submit to abortion because they feel unwanted, alone, or unsupported.
That's the first problem you encounter on the sidewalk. And remember -- she's not a problem or a project. Don't solve her.
Solve the injustice.
That injustice is that she's been told she can't maintain her life, or equality, if she protects herself and her child.
Your presence directly confronts that lie and puts in the trash bin.
So don't refuse to show up because you're unsure. Simply stepping out on that sidewalk is the step that makes space for life.