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Center for Reproductive Rights Deeply Saddened by Murder of Dr. George Tiller
Date:5/31/2009

not the multiple forms of harassment or severe intimidation that are linked to violence. Moreover, FACE fails to adequately protect providers because it allows for injunctive relief or civil remedies only after a FACE violation has occurred. Predictably, abortion opponents soon learned the loopholes in FACE and began to exploit them. First, they concentrated their harassment on a smaller number of physicians, namely Dr. Tiller, with the aim of forcing them to stop performing abortions. Second, their tactics gradually shifted to the private sphere, involving protests at providers' private homes where FACE does not reach. Therefore, attacks against Dr. Tiller have not abated since the passage of FACE but have rather changed form and become more personal.

B. Destruction of Private Property

In 2007, Dr. Tiller's facility was attacked by vandals who cut a hole in the ceiling, inserted a garden hose, and flooded part of the facility with several inches of water. They also attempted to seal the gates of the parking lot. WHCS was forced to close for more than a month due to mold damage. The closure prevented approximately 230 women from obtaining reproductive health services at the clinic and resulted in at least $86,000 of damages, not including lost income. This was the second time that WHCS was forced to close; the first was in 1986, when a bomb exploded at the clinic and caused $100,000 in damage. Again, attacks on WHCS reflect a national trend of attacking the property of reproductive health clinics. Between the years 1977-2007, there were over 41 bombings, 175 arsons, 94 attempted bombings and arsons, and 623 bomb threats directed at abortion providers, resulting in $8.5m in damages.

C. Attacks against Private Life, Family, and Reputation

Now that a federal law prohibits clinic blockades, anti-abortion extremists have shifted tactics and begun to wage smear campaigns -- some of which advocate v
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SOURCE Center for Reproductive Rights
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