AUSTIN, Texas — On Tuesday, lawmakers in the City of Chandler and Mason County introduced ordinances that attempted to intimidate people from using city or county roads to help anyone leave the state to get an abortion. The ordinances ultimately failed after facing community opposition and legal concerns. Recently, similar ordinances have passed in Mitchell and Goliad Counties; the City of Llano has temporarily tabled their proposed ordinance.
The laws allow private citizens to sue a person or organization they suspect of violating the ordinance. Anti-abortion extremists are behind the ordinances, targeting counties near airports and interstate highways in order to intimidate people from supporting those who need to leave the state to access safe and legal health care, and isolating pregnant people from family and friends who may be afraid to help them.
The following statement can be attributed to Wendy Davis, Senior Advisor at Planned Parenthood Texas Votes:
"These new laws, pushed by anti-abortion extremists, are unconstitutional and an outrageous abuse of power. They empower and encourage vigilante behavior and foster even greater fear, intimidation, and confusion among people traveling for abortion and reproductive health care services when their home state has already denied them that right within its own geographic boundaries. By attempting to restrict travel, Texas seeks to make pregnant people prisoners of the state, isolate them from support, and force them to give birth no matter what.
“We know that these laws will disproportionately affect people of color, particularly Black women; people with low incomes; and people in rural areas, exacerbating existing inequalities in access to reproductive healthcare.
“This calculated attack on the bodily autonomy of the people of Texas is a flagrant violation of personal freedoms that must be fiercely opposed.”
Planned Parenthood Texas Votes (PPTV) is the nonpartisan policy, advocacy and political arm for the Planned Parenthood affiliates in Texas.