Abortion Activists Reach Settlement, Plan Event in Aurora

April 2, 2010

Anti-abortion activists will hold a prayer vigil Friday outside a clinic in Aurora. This is their first big event since settling a free speech lawsuit last week with the city.

Members of the Pro-Life Action League have been having run-ins with police in Aurora since a Planned Parenthood clinic opened there in 2007.

Executive Director Eric Scheidler says his group finally filed a federal lawsuit when protesters tried to hold up picket signs, and the city answered by posting signs of its own, telling them where they could and couldn't picket.

The suit was settled last week, and Scheidler says the Good Friday prayer vigil should be different.

SCHEIDLER: I don't have to go to a protest or a prayer vigil like this worried about what may or may not happen with the police.

The settlement stipulates the city must take down its signs, and give police free speech training.

A city spokesman says in a statement the protesters will also have to give advance notice of any big rallies.

A spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood, which was not a party to the lawsuit, says her organization's primary concern is the safety of its patients and staff.