Update 4/27/2020: According to Pro-Life San Francisco, attorneys for pro-life activist Ron Konopaski have confirmed that the charges against him failed to be filed. Konopaski had been accused of not complying with the city’s shelter-in-place order during the COVID-19 pandemic. Because the charges were not filed, the case against him will not move forward.
4/4/2020: On Thursday, three pro-life activists stood outside of Valencia Planned Parenthood in San Francisco six feet apart from each other, holding pro-life signs for about 15 minutes. Then, police arrived. The officers issued two warnings and a citation to the pro-lifers for allegedly breaking the Stay-at-Home order issued for the city amid the coronavirus pandemic. But the pro-life activists say they will never stop helping women and defending life.
Terrisa Bukovinac, founder and executive director of Pro-Life San Francisco, joined activists Matthew Prewett and Ron Konopaski outside the abortion business on Thursday to encourage women to choose life for their babies and help them with the challenges and pressures they may face. Konopaski, who was attacked last year by abortion supporters (as mentioned in the video below), was outside Planned Parenthood on Tuesday and been warned by police not to return.
“We’re out here at the Valencia Planned Parenthood where we regularly exercise our constitutional right to help underprivileged people gain access to healthcare to choose life,” Bukovinac told the camera. “We are out here obviously with the police today, who are enforcing the Stay-at-Home order, which we believe we are not in violation of. We are simply having some fresh air outside hanging out just like a lot of people are in San Francisco at parks right now, and we feel that this particular action is discriminatory in nature.”
When Konopaski returned on Thursday, he was issued a citation, while Bukovinac and Prewett were issued warnings. “We’re just going to notify you that this ordinance is in effect right now,” the police officers can be heard saying in the video, “and that you do need to be either doing the work that is considered pertinent to this time.” The officers can be heard telling the pro-lifers that they must be police officers, firefighters, or healthcare workers to be outside during the stay-at-home order which says all non-essential workers should stay in “their place of residence.”
The order states that all travel — including walking and biking — is forbidden; however, the order also states that “Individuals may go on a walk, get exercise, or take a pet outside […] as long as at least six feet of social distancing is maintained.” It also lists “essential activities” exempt from the order as including “outdoor activity, such as walking, hiking, or running provided that you maintain at least six feet of social distancing.” In the video, other people can be seen walking and even biking in the vicinity.
Bukovinac told the police officers that their pro-life presence outside of the abortion business is essential in helping women access actual health care for themselves and their preborn children and point them in the direction of organizations that can help them through their pregnancy.
“Abortion is the number one cause of death in America today and it is elective by definition,” explained Bukovinac. “And yet, this facility remains open against the Stay-at-Home order that put a moratorium on elective procedures starting March 27th.” She asked how Planned Parenthood could be allowed to continue to kill preborn children at 16 weeks gestation but pro-life activists could not be present outside to help any woman or girl who may be pressured into abortion.
“We are not going to leave these women to fend for themselves or to be victims of yet another greedy and viscous industry that thrives off of violence and the marginalized,” said Bukovinac. She said their attorneys would be speaking with the police so they could clarify exactly what the rules are for the Stay-at-Home order.
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