This morning Rusty Thomas lead a sit-in, blockading the entrance to the clinic in a clear attempt to prevent access to EMW. About a dozen people including a few minors (one infant) sat on the clinic’s property and refused to move, while at least 100 onlookers gathered around, creating the wildest spectacle I’ve seen in my 18 years as a Louisville Clinic Escort.
I was approaching the entrance with a client, just a few minutes after the doors were unlocked. We were having the usual light conversation when I observed that the scene at the door was different than the usual massive cluster fuck of bullies. Instead of anti’s swarming at us and lining the sidewalk with signs, they were all tightly packed near the entrance. Then I noticed everyone was holding their phones up and pointing them at a swarm of people who I could tell were on the property. I told the person I was walking with that it looked like some trespassing was happening, and invited her to step to the other side of the parked cars and continue walking with me around the block. I figured we would head to her car and figure it out from there. Once we passed the clinic and rounded the corner, other escorts told me to head to the alley, where escorts were holding space at the back gate, which is usually reserved for clinic staff. We were able to walk folks to the alley and in the back door and NO APPOINTMENTS WERE MISSED thanks to the quick actions of escorts and staff who train to stay focused on safety and client needs.
Police were already on the scene, and responded pretty quickly, but were generally helpful and gentle to the offenders who face trespassing charges, and were in clear violation of the FACE Act. I can’t help but notice the contrast between the treatment that this type of behavior is met with compared to how individuals within the Movement for Black Lives are treated by law enforcement……
After holding space at the alley driveway for period I moved to the front of the building again where police had blocked the street and were detaining the trespassers on the opposite side of the street from the clinic. The remainder of the morning’s debacle was broadcast live from our Every Saturday Morning Facebook page. Watch that here: https://www.facebook.com/LouClinicEscrts/videos/10154291275180146/ or at the bottom of this post.
We are really thankful to everyone who has reached out and offered LCE support this morning. Our volunteers did a fabulous job of showing up for access this morning. We know we have not seen the last of this sort of behavior, and we expect the worst from these extremist terrorists. Contributions to LCE legal defense fund can be made via paypal to firstname.lastname@example.org.