Tag Archives: women’s health

For Those Interested in Abortion Clinic Escorting

If you are interested in escorting at an abortion clinic, I encourage you to contact any clinic that you can make it to once or twice a month (or whatever your availability is, even once a year is going to help.) Ask them if they have escorting, do they need escorts now (or when do they usually need us?) and when will the next training session be? Remember to listen closely to your trainers and take what you see and hear very seriously. The needs of the clinic and the women outweigh our needs to express our feelings to the anti-abortion protesters, no matter how incendiary or vile they can be. Remember never to carry weapons on the premises, no matter how crazy the antis are. Follow the rules, keep your wits about you and stay legal–and enjoy the rewarding feeling of knowing that you are doing something truly courageous.

A note about protection and paternalism, from a discussion I was having in the comments:


Allow me to note, too, that escorting is mostly about emotional comfort and support, rather than (in the case of males, paternalistic or patriarchal) physical protection. Our presence also serves as a deterrent, as we are witnesses and, finally, the last line of physical defense–though we cannot ever physically engage the protesters. In a life-threatening situation, such as one involving weapons, who knows–escorts should be concentrating on staying safe and leave the security detail to the security detail. As a male escort, I do my best to keep my privilege in check and not be given to paternalism.

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Letter from an Abortion Clinic Escort: Pt 1- A Day in the Life of an Escort

Warning: contains strong language, sexual content and violent imagery. Real names are changed but nicknames remain the same.
A Day in the Life of an Abortion Clinic Escort
I am an abortion clinic escort. Two Saturdays a month, I walk with girls and women, as well as their companions of any gender, from their vehicles to the clinic entrance. I and my escort partner occupy the attention of the patients on the way to the door, which I often hold open for them in a more-than-symbolic gesture: I literally support your access to a safe abortion. For any reason. On demand. Should be free of charge. No apologies to the antis or anyone else.

The antis [anti-abortion protesters]? The antis are present and accounted for. They are men and women of varying ages, standing on the sidewalks, terrifying the holy fuck out of our patients.

A young girl in her car will see us coming to escort her and get a terrified look on her face. She thinks we’re with the protesters. We assure her that we’re not with them, we’re with the clinic, and we’re going to walk her inside. They always sigh with relief, but still look disoriented by the cries of the antis. We tell the girls and women the antis aren’t allowed on the property, but they are going to yell a lot of nasty stuff. She doesn’t have to talk to them. (Some do. It can be awesome when a patient just rips into those bastards. Fuck and yes.)

We keep talking to the girls and women as they walk inside, because we are trying to distract them from and drown out stuff like this: Continue reading

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