Increase in testiness at clinics?

 I've been escorting for a few years, and prior to this month, never seen cops come to the clinic.  But in the last four weeks, cops have come three times (!).  They've all come because a patient's friend assaulted the protesters.  If cops have to show up, that's the best scenario, but still...I'd rather keep things boring and civil.

Have any other escorts noticed similar activity?  I've got this half-baked theory that the stress of the campaigning, wars, and bailing out Wall Street has more people closer to the limit of tolerance than usual.

Keeping it Civil with clinic protestors

Hi! I've been an escort for the past few years, and I've got an opinion about protestors that I think is in the minority, and I'd like to share it and see what comes up.

I've escorted at two different clinics, and at one of them, the front door to the clinic is on the sidewalk, and protestors can literally stand less than a foot away from the door. So I've been chatted up by protestors while escorting, and have had conversations with several of them. So far they all seem aflicted with the exceptional insanity that is mono-theistic religion, and while we can agree that abortions are never a primary goal in life, none of the protestors want to do anything effective about reducing abortions either (like real sex education).

Anyways, I've gotten to know a few of the protestors, and we share a similar desire to keep things civil. I've used this to positive affect, when another escort got into a heated discussion with another protestor, and I was able to use my limited conversational skills to tell a joke, as in, "So...anyone want to hear a joke?" The civil protestor played along and I was able to re-direct a previously heated conversation into something less volatile.

So here's the thing: My attitude is that some protestors are interested in keeping things civil and I'm inclined to act favorably to them so as to develop this civil relationship. When I say "act favorably to them", it means greeting them (pleasantly) when I arrive at the clinic and before I don my uniform, wishing them a good day at the end of the shift, and allowing them to have civil conversations with patients (if the patient feels like it).

Most other escorts that I've spoken to about this seem to paint all protestors with the same brush and think that a difference of opinion on choice means that the person is incorrigibly stupid or evil and not deserving of politeness.

Do any other escorts have a similarly civil attitude towards protestors? (Maybe I'm just lucky that the paid protestors at my two clinics are civil too.)

MA State House of Reps passes stronger buffer zone law in MA!

I'm so psyched about this, you have no idea! I just got this email via the Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts:

"Yesterday, the Massachusetts House overwhelmingly passed legislation, by a vote of 122-28, to establish a 35-foot fixed protest-free buffer zone around the entrances and exits of all reproductive health facilities in Massachusetts. Passage of this bill will mean the creation of a stronger and more enforceable Buffer Zones Law that will protect the safety, privacy and dignity of patients and staff alike. We expect the bill to arrive on Governor Patrick's desk by the end of next week."

The Senate already approved the bill - unanimously! So unless Governor Patrick has some weird brain fart we are getting a new buffer zone! Yay!

For background, I escort at the Planned Parenthood in Boston, and have been doing so for about four years now. I'm sure that our protesters are tame compared with what some of you have to deal with, but they can still do a lot to freak out patients going into the clinic. One of our challenges is the clinic placement. It is on a busy, divided street with two lanes on either side and an above-ground trolley track in the middle. The sidewalk is very wide and there are always people going back and forth in front of the clinic, which is practically next door to a supermarket. The clinic itself is not set back from the sidewalk at all, which means that anyone going in and anyone going past walks right by the clinic's walls (and door, if going past). It also means that protesters set up right on the sidewalk and hassle everyone going by until it's clear they are not going into the clinic. Once a month there is a big prayer session where the police sets up barriers, and a big church group comes marching down the sidewalk with a big ol' crucifix and often a ginormous picture of the Virgin of Guadaloupe. This being Boston, most of our protesters are Catholic.

Ok, meanwhile, our buffer zone law says that no one is allowed to approach anyone else "for the purpose of counseling, leafleting" etc. within six feet without their permission, while within an 18-ft. radius of the entrance. Basically what this means is that the protesters can stand still beside the entrance, forcing the patients to approach them, or they can stand just outside the radius and yell a little louder. They can also harass the patients as they come along the sidewalk towards the clinic entrance.

As I understand it, new new law will forbid people from loitering within 35 feet of the clinic entrance, unless they are agents of the clinic (aka escorts). This will solve the standing still problem, though perhaps not the motion harassment. I've been trying to find the actual text of the bill online, but so far no luck.

Edited to add a link to a short Boston Globe story.
Dusk Wolf

Hello :)

Hello everyone. I've been researching the whole escorting thing and think I'd like to try something like this. Actually, any type of volunteer work with a clinic. I would love to be able to help girls feel a little less intimidated or afraid. Does anyone know of any opportunities in Arizona? I've been looking online all day and am getting eye strain from looking at this point.  :)  Thank you!
  • giniliz


One of my fellow escorts moved to Indy recently and would like to get involved in pro-choice action (escorting or otherwise) there.  Anybody else in the Indianapolis area?
sex ed

Emergency contraception access

I created a community called ecaccess, which is meant to be a grassroots network of people across the United States that can help women access emergency contraception, either with resources, directions, monetary assistance, or delivering/mailing it to the woman. If you are interested in being a part of this effort, please join, and let others know.

Thanks. Sorry for the off-topicness.
  • clpp

CLPP annual reproductive justice conference

The Civil Liberties & Public Policy Program at Hampshire College invites you to our free annual reproductive justice conference at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts from Friday, March 30-Sunday, April 1, 2007.  More information can be found on our website:

Do you want to learn more about reproductive freedom and social justice? Or are you a longtime activist looking for inspiration and rejuvenation? Whether you are new to the movement or a veteran organizer, join us at the 21st annual national conference “From Abortion Rights to Social Justice: Building the Movement for Reproductive Freedom.�?

On March 30-April 1, 2007, campus and community activists will be gathering at Hampshire College to unite for reproductive justice. We are expecting a large turnout—last year there were over 1000 participants from the US and abroad. We offer more than 30 workshops and trainings. Conference speakers address reproductive freedom as it relates to a broad range of social justice initiatives including economic justice, health care reform, racial equality, the war on terrorism, freedom from violence, youth liberation, civil liberties, and LGBTQ rights.

Over the weekend, you will deepen your understanding of issues you already know about, make new connections, and unite with others who are passionate about working for social justice.

Free housing (in Hampshire dorms) and food are provided for the conference weekend. Free childcare and sign language interpretation is also available.

For more information, check out our website at or contact us at (413) 559-6976 or
  • eyelid

bad escort, no cookie

In escorting news: regarding cold. I layered like crazy this morning. I believe that Ugg boots are the best ones I have found so far for cold. Superior to Sorrels. A warning though, Uggs do not deal so well with snow; it is difficult if not impossible to make them waterproof.

please feel free to add your own boot suggestions.

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The protestor today assured me that she saw me as an individual, not just as an escort. I kind of didn't know how to respond to that. I am more than just an escort, of course, but my choice of activity says a lot about who I am.