As they marked the 35th anniversary of the landmark US Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion, supporters gathered today outside the Women’s Health Care Services clinic in Wichita, Kansas. The clinic is run by Dr. George Tiller, one of the few remaining providers of late-term abortion care.
Despite over 20 years of anti-abortion harassment, intimidation, and violence- his clinic was bombed in 1986 and he was shot twice during an assassination attempt in 1993- Dr. Tiller remains steadfast in his mission to provide compassionate and quality healthcare to women seeking late term abortions due to illness or very troubled pregnancies.
Dr. Tiller is currently the target of a grand jury investigation in Kansas. The investigation is the result of a citizen petition circulated by anti-abortion extremist groups. Kansas is one of six states that allow citizens to petition for a grand jury to convene. This grand jury is the second to be created by anti-abortion extremists through petition drives in 18 months. Last year, a grand jury reviewed the death of one of Dr. Tiller’s patients, but found no evidence whatsoever of any wrongdoing.
Diane Wahto, a Wichita women’s rights activist stated, ‘We are here today to let Dr. Tiller know how much we appreciate all he has done for the women of Wichita and women from across the country who come here when they have nowhere left to turn. For 35 years, Dr. Tiller has helped women when few other doctors can help. We want Dr. Tiller to know that Wichita Stands with him. We also salute the staff of Women’s Health Care Services for their dedication and caring in the face of ongoing harassment.
“Today marks 35 years of safe and legal abortion in this country. Prior to the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973, countless women in this country died and were injured as a result of back-alley abortions. We will never go back.”