By Katlin Connin | WSBT 22
SOUTH BEND — Lawyers for Women’s Care Center want South Bend’s Common Council to override a mayor’s veto.
Mayor Pete Buttigieg vetoed a zoning measure that would have allowed the clinic to open a new office on Lincolnway West.
Clinic leaders say they want to restore their reputation.
The clinic wants to operate out of what is now a house. It’s maybe a hundred feet away from a building which could become an abortion clinic.
Women’s Care Center says it is proudly pro-life.
But Mayor Pete Buttigieg vetoed the rezoning attempt, saying in a statement today the organization should choose a site where rezoning isn’t required, and with less possibility for conflict.
Women’s care center says that veto was secured with false data.
“You could do your work, your good work, anywhere. Why are we risking provocation If you can do your good work anywhere?” asked a man who was asked to leave the press conference hosted by Women’s Care Center on Friday.
But the pro-life organization says there’s no risk of provocation.
“Zero. Nothing has ever happened. Nothing will ever happen,” said Jenny Hunsberger, VP of Women’s Care Center.
Vice President Jenny Hunsberger says in 34 years there has never been an incidence of violence at a women’s care center. She says her opponents are using false data to say violence will occur.
Whole Woman’s Health Alliance, which wants to open an abortion clinic, says a report from the Feminist Majority Foundation supports that idea.
“That shows increased harassment and violence when a fake clinic is in close proximity to a healthcare provider that provides abortion care,” said Jesse Torrey, Whole Woman’s Health Alliance managing director.
Torrey says beyond that, Women’s Care Center has unethical business practices.
“They are in the business of deceiving and coercing women and doing everything they can to try and not offer them all their options,” said Torrey.
Hunsberger says that’s not true and it’s unfair.
“It harms Women’s Care Center because it’s being used to support the idea that confrontation and even violence will happen if we open a new office on LincolnWay,” said Hunsberger.
Torrey calls businesses like Women’s Care Center “fake clinics,” because they intend to confuse women. She says that confusion is the very reason those businesses move in next to abortion clinics.
WSBT 22 asked Hunsberger why this location. She told us more than once that Friday’s meeting was to talk about Women’s Care Center’s reputation, not the rezoning effort.
This story originally appeared on https://wsbt.com/