September 23-November 1, 2009
This Biannual event is in it’s 3rd year. amongst other activities, vigils are held outside of clinics around the country. there are usually low numbers of these protesters present at a time, but they do bring a certain threat.
Our concerns are similar to something we experience often: these are not our regular protesters. The groups which organize and recruit for special events like this do not inform the participants of laws about blocking the entrance, or trespassing on clinic property. I personally have been grabbed from behind, with both arms, by a person much larger than me who was not told the simple common sense rule: NO TOUCHING!
This concern is one reason why we want to have extra escorts dropping in throughout these 40 days.
Also, we want to send an important message to these guest do-gooders: DO NOT COME BACK! If they feel like there is little to no resistance to their bullying, or that their silly vigils are working, they will see fit to return. We need to send a clear message that their bullying is not welcome, and will not be tolerated here.
During these 40 days the regular escorts will maintain their regular schedules: 7-8:30am Tue-Sat. We are asking people who are able to pop in and help out during those times, but also to cruise by the clinic throughout the day.
Clients leave anytime between 1pm and 6pm. All of us should be keeping an extra eye on the clinic during these 40 days. What often happens is that pro-life groups will take shifts together. Sometimes this is just a family of 3, but it could be a church group of 15 +.
If you are downtown, and have time to pass by the clinic, please do. If you see something concerning these are our suggestions:
- go in to the clinic, and ask the receptionist to call an escort and alert them to what’s happening. If you have time to wait and help escort please do. an experienced escort will be happy to provide helpful tips and support.
- we highly recommend having a camera with you. document what goes on *please be sensitive to the fact that cameras are an intimidating tool used to shame clients by antis. If you wish to use a camera while clients are present be obvious, and maybe tell them that you are not filming them but are documenting the awful bullying that is taking place*. if you do not have a camera, take some notes. you can post notes as comments here, or email them to email@example.com
- remember, if you plan to be an escort BRING A BUDDY!!! We strongly discourage anyone doing this work alone. it is not safe, and can be very stressful, and even triggering.
- dress for the weather. remember it is dark at 7am. PLEASE do not wear open toed shoes.
Thanks for your interest and support. please use this forum, or the email address above for any questions you may have.
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Excellent suggestions – not only for this event, but for escorting in general or encountering a weird situation at the clinic during non-regular escorting times.