Loading
Settlement reached in free speech dispute between Illinois city and pro-lifers
Pro-lifers protest outside of the Aurora, Ill. Planned Parenthood facility. Credit: Pro Life Action League.
Pro-lifers protest outside of the Aurora, Ill. Planned Parenthood facility. Credit: Pro Life Action League.

.- The city of Aurora, Illinois has settled a lawsuit alleging it violated the First Amendment rights of protesters of a Planned Parenthood abortion facility. Protesters had complained of conflicting legal advice from city officials and threats of mass arrests from the local police chief.

At one protest in 2007, police arrived on the scene with an armored paddy wagon and constant video surveillance, which protesters said was intimidating.

The settlement requires the city to amend two ordinances claimed to be unconstitutional, mandates First Amendment training for city police and establishes a grievance process to handle disputes between protesters and city officials, a press release from the Chicago-based Thomas More Society reports.

The Planned Parenthood facility opened in 2007 after covertly gaining approval for construction under the subsidiary name Gemini Office Development. It attracted over 1,000 protesters after citizens learned the building presented as an office complex was in fact an abortion clinic.

Peter Breen, Executive Director of the Thomas More Society, said the settlement signals a “successful end” to the lawsuit intended to protect the rights of those who pray at protest at abortion facilities in the city.

The provisions of the settlement require the removal of signs barring any “picketing or protesting.” The settlement establishes protections for pro-life individuals to use public sidewalks and parkways. It also bars the arrests of protesters who use the private access road near the facility. They will not be arrested without a property owner’s direction.

For the sake of public safety, the city will take necessary steps to ensure a public sidewalk is constructed along the access road.

Signs with graphic content may be used in demonstrations, with appropriate warning signs displayed to alert passersby.

“Early on, Judge Virginia Kendall expressed her hope that the parties would reach an agreement that could serve as a model for the rest of the country,” Breen continued. “We believe this settlement agreement will become such a model.”


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

3D Church mapping
3D Church mapping
#PAUSEforPeace Initiative
Dedicating art to San Juan de la Cruz
A state without territory elects new government
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Synod on the Family October 2014
Preferential option for the poor
God is alive, even in sport
'A forbidden God' named Best Film at the International Catholic Film Festival
Vatican backs a 'Pause for Peace' during World Cup final
The effects of religious violence in Sarajevo 
The origin of Corpus Christi 
Corpus Christi at the Vatican 
Homage to an Indian Cardinal
Train of the Child's Light
New book explaining gestures of the Mass
Encounter between Pope Francis and the Charismatic Renewal in the Spirit Movement.
Religious tensions subside amid Balkan floods
John Paul II Center for Studies on Marriage and Family
Jul
31

Liturgical Calendar

July 31, 2014

Saint Ignatius of Loyola, Priest

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 13:47-53

Gospel
Date
07/31/14
07/30/14
07/29/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Jer 18: 1-6
Gospel:: Mt 13: 47-53

Saint of the Day

St. Ignatius of Loyola »

Saint
Date
07/28/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 13:47-53

Homily
Date
07/31/14
07/30/14
07/29/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: