A California-based pro-choice organization says it will sponsor a floating abortion clinic in the waters off the coast of southern states in order to skirt bans on the procedure.
The organization, known as “PRROWESS,” will operate on a boat in the Gulf of Mexico and will serve patients primarily from Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, Texas and other states along the southern coast, the organization’s website says.
The boat will be located in federal waters.
Meg Autry, an OB-GYN in San Francisco, told NBC Bay Area she hopes to raise $20 million for the clinic.
“The project is being funded with philanthropy, and the patient’s care is on a needs basis, so most individuals will pay little to nothing for services,” Autry said.
She described the project as her “life’s work.”
“Part of the reason we’re working on this project so hard is because wealthy people in our country are always going to have access [to abortions], so once again, it’s a time now where poor, people of color, marginalized individuals, are gonna suffer – and by suffering I mean like lives lost,” Autry said.
The website claims it is a solution for “individuals seeking reproductive health care and surgical abortion where it is illegal or impossible.” The clinic also will offer “services such as contraception and point of care STI testing that may not be offered at the closest land facilities,” the website says.
The organizer’s goal, according to the website, is to operate the floating clinic three weeks out of each month. It will have helicopter access for medical emergencies.
It will be located in federal waters “so its activities will not be restricted by state laws,” the website says. AL.com reported that federal waters begin three nautical miles from the coasts of Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi and nine nautical miles from the coast of Texas.
PRROWESS has not set a date for the projected launch of the floating clinic.
Photo courtesy: ©Matt Hardy/Unsplash
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.