Texas City Becomes 30th to Ban Abortion, Declares Itself a “Sanctuary for the Unborn”

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Jun 8, 2021   |   3:04PM   |   Levelland, Texas

The city of Levelland, Texas just became the 30th in the nation to protect unborn babies by outlawing abortions within city limits.

On Monday, the city council passed the Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinance in a unanimous 4-0 vote.

The ordinance recognizes that unborn babies are valuable human beings who deserve to be protected under the law. It prohibits abortions within city limits and outlines legal consequences for abortionists who abort unborn babies. It does not penalize women who seek or have abortions, and it does not prohibit abortions when the mother’s life is at risk.

Mark Lee Dickson, director with Right To Life of East Texas and founder of the Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn initiative, said the Levelland ordinance was two years in the making.

“I am very grateful for Kati Morris and the many women who are residents of Levelland who came forward during this time and have shared with me those heart-wrenching stories of what they have gone through,” Dickson told LifeNews.com. “This vote tonight is not just a victory for the unborn, but a victory for those mothers as well.”

During their May meeting, the Levelland council members heard from pro-life residents as well as other mayors of cities with Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinances, Everything Lubbock reports.

“[Whiteface was the] 13th to pass this ordinance, and I’m not sorry yet. We’ve never been sued,” Whiteface Mayor Judy Deavours told the council.

Big Spring Mayor Shannon Thomason said the American Civil Liberties Union urged their city not to pass the ordinance, but they did anyway.

“After adoption, we got a less than friendly letter from the ACLU,” Thomason said.

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Thus far, however, the ACLU and other pro-abortion groups have not succeeded in their legal challenges against the pro-life ordinances.

Last week, a federal judge threw out a lawsuit by Planned Parenthood challenging the Lubbock, Texas ordinance. Lubbock is the first city with an abortion facility to pass a Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinance, and Planned Parenthood stopped aborting unborn babies on June 1 when it went into effect.

Seven other Texas cities won another victory in 2020 when the American Civil Liberties Union dropped its lawsuit challenging their pro-life ordinances.

Now, Dickson said the movement is growing across Texas and into other states. Cities in Nebraska and Ohio also recently passed ordinances to protect unborn babies by banning abortions.

“There is much interest to see abortion outlawed in several cities across Texas including great cities like Centerville, Shenandoah, Dickinson, San Angelo and Tyler,” he said. “Abortion should be outlawed in all of our communities for this simple reason: Abortion hurts children and their mothers.”

The Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinance defines an abortion as “the act of using or prescribing an instrument, a drug, a medicine, or any other substance, device, or means with the intent to cause the death of an unborn child of a woman known to be pregnant.”

The ordinance has both public and private enforcement mechanisms. The public enforcement mechanism establishes fines against the abortionist and anyone who helps with an abortion within city limits. However, it cannot be enforced until Roe v. Wade is overturned.

However, the private enforcement mechanism is immediate. It makes abortionists and those who help them “liable in tort to a surviving relative of the aborted unborn child, including the unborn child’s mother, father, grandparents, siblings or half-siblings,” meaning the abortionist can be sued for aborting the unborn child.