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AL Senate passes bill prohibiting abortion facilities near public schools

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On Tuesday, the Alabama State Senate voted by 27-6 to pass a bill that would prohibit abortion facilities from being within 2,000 feet of a kindergarten-to-8th-grade public school.

Under the proposed legislation, existing facilities near a school, such as the Alabama Women’s Center for Reproductive Alternatives located near the Academy of Academics and Arts in Huntsville, would be unable to renew their licenses without relocating further away. “My hope is that no more in the state would ever open that close to small children,” bill sponsor Sen. Paul Sanford, a Republican, declared.

Aside from the nature of abortion, Alabama Women’s Center is controversial for past inspections that have found a variety of health violations, including equipment not being cleaned between patients, expired medications, failure to comply with the state’s ultrasound law, injections given by staff not wearing gloves, failure to monitor women in recovery, and more.

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“It’s just a terrible situation because of the conflicts and the controversy that goes along with an abortion clinic. It just should not be across the street from public school,” Rev. James Henderson, who organizes routine pro-life prayer-vigils outside Alabama Women’s Center, said.

Johnson also expects the bill to clear the House and be signed into law by Governor Robert Bentley, although it would likely be challenged in court as similar laws have been in other states.

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