Appeals Court Upholds Order Barring Anti-Choice Trespassers From Private Property Surrounding Nassau County Reproductive Health Care Clinic

Affiliate: ACLU of New York
November 4, 2002 12:00 am

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NEW YORK- A state appeals court today upheld an order permanently barring anti-choice protestors from trespassing on private property that housed a Long Island abortion clinic in a case brought by the New York Civil Liberties Union.

“We are pleased that the appeals court has recognized that illegal trespassing and harassment in the name of stopping abortions are not acceptable,” said Rebekah Diller, Director of the New York Civil Liberties Union’s Reproductive Rights Project, which represented the clinic and its landlord in the case.

“This decision sets an important precedent for protecting abortion providers and their patients,” she added, noting that the Garden City clinic had been a frequent target of anti-choice harassment and intimidation

The NYCLU originally brought the lawsuit because the criminal justice system in Nassau County had failed to protect the clinic and the women who needed its services, Diller said. A Nassau County District Court judge had ignored well-settled law and acquitted an anti-choice trespasser of criminal charges by creating a religious exception to the trespass law. Thus, the clinic was forced to file a civil lawsuit to obtain relief.

Diller, NYCLU Executive Donna Lieberman and cooperating attorney John M. Brickman of Great Neck represented the clinic and its landlord.

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