By Cheryl Sullenger
Austin, TX – Two years ago, there were over 40 abortion facilities operating in Texas with very little oversight. Yesterday, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling that could result in the immediate closure of 13 abortion facilities, leaving only seven open by this weekend.
A spot-check conducted by Operation Rescue early Friday morning of several facilities that are in known non-compliance with the law shows that some have already shut down while others continue to operate.
The ruling blocks a stay issued by a lower court on enforcement of Texas’ HB2, which provides minimum safety standards for abortion businesses, until the State’s appeal of the lower court’s decision that the law is unconstitutional can be heard.
The ruling allowed the full law to be enforced immediately, including portions that were previously blocked by the lower court that pertained to the requirements that abortionists maintain hospital privileges within 30 miles of their abortion facilities and that those facilities meet Ambulatory Surgical Center standards.
“This is a huge victory and gives us every confidence that all the provisions of HB2 will prevail upon appeal,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue, who has coauthored the new book, Abortion Free, that outlines how to implement strategy to stop abortion, including those used in Texas will soon be responsible for closing 83% of all abortion centers in that state. Previous closures have already caused abortion numbers in Texas to plummet.
The reality is that abortion facilities operate well below accepted medical standards. They are known to cut corners on women’s health and safety in order to maximize profit. Since these business have been largely without oversight, they have been able to get away with subjecting women to unsafe conditions and practices for decades.
The Texas law ordered abortion facilities to upgrade to medical standards. Instead of cleaning up, they sued. Now, they must close.
“Abortion facilities that cannot ensure the most basic care, such as sanitary facilities, proper drug handling, adequately licensed staff, and hallways that can accommodate a gurney in the event of an emergency are just too dangerous to stay open,” said Newman. “The abortion cartel has worked overtime to try to spin the facts into saying safety rules pose a danger to women’s health. Their propaganda attempts would be laughable if the result of injured or infected women and dead babies wasn’t so tragic.”
In 2010, Operation Rescue conducted an undercover investigation of abortion facilities in Texas and found that violations of health codes, informed consent, waiting periods, and parental notification was rampant. Disturbingly, Operation Rescue discovered that Whole Women’s Health abortion mills in McAllen and Austin were illegally dumping recognizable remains of aborted babies in public dumpsters, which posed a hazard to the general public. They were cited for these violations and heavily fined.
In 2013, Operation Rescue released shocking information and photos obtained by four former employees of Houston abortionist Douglas Karpen, that were evidence that babies were being born alive only to have their heads twisted nearly off their bodies during illegally late abortions. A grand jury mysteriously failed to indict Karpen despite the gruesome photos taken by clinic workers depicting large babies that had been nearly beheaded.
Nevertheless, that evidence prompted Texas Gov. Rick Perry to call a special session of the legislature for the purpose of passing HB2. Today, Karpen is prevented from legally conducting abortions due to the implementation of that law. The Karpen evidence also contributed to the passage of Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Acts in several states as well as the U.S. House.
“Documenting and exposing abortion abuses can serve as the foundation for safety regulations that can shut down substandard abortion mills and save lives. As a result of yesterday’s ruling we expect thousands of women will be spared the trauma and tragedy of abortion and that precious baby boys and girls will grace their lives with blessings,” said Newman. “Protecting the lives of women and their babies is what our work is all about.”