The phones began ringing at the clinic not long after the Alabama governor signed a bill that would ban nearly all abortions in the state, including in cases of rape and incest. The desperate women calling the POWER House, home of Montgomery’s only abortion clinic, all wanted to know the same thing, NBC News reports.
“They’re asking: ‘Can we still come in? Are you still open?’” said volunteer Bianca Cameron-Schwiesow. “They’re in a panic and they’re scared. And we say that is fine, you can still come in, because they don’t realize that this is going to stay open for the next six months.”
If not longer. The law is supposed to go into effect in six months, but likely legal challenges from the American Civil Liberties Union and Planned Parenthood mean it could be years before the controversial Alabama law is enforced, experts have said.
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“They are still terrified though,” said Margot Heartline, who also volunteers at POWER (People Organizing for Women’s Empowerment and Rights). They fear “they’re going to be thrown in jail if they go to a clinic.”