WASHINGTON –U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), with Senators Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) today introduced the Pregnancy Center Security Act to enhance security for pro-life pregnancy centers and to protect staff and patients from potential violence and extremism. The legislation will establish a grant program for pregnancy-help organizations to implement security upgrades, including the installation of security cameras and systems.
Following the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the U.S. has seen a dangerous uptick in violence against pro-life pregnancy centers, organizations, and churches. In Pocatello, Idaho, Compassion & Hope Pregnancy Center was vandalized.
“Under the Biden administration, the fight to protect life has become increasingly dangerous. Pro-life pregnancy centers across the nation, which provide vital resources for women, the unborn, and our communities, have become targets for violent attacks. To ensure these life-saving centers can continue to safely operate, the Pregnancy Center Security Act would create a grant program to enable security upgrades,” said Risch. “While the fight for life is far from over, the Pregnancy Center Security Act is a step in the right direction to ensure those on the frontlines protecting life are safe.”
“Pregnancy centers offer hope and support for women, girls, and their unborn children. It’s offensive for these facilities to be threatened by violence and vandalism, and I fully support this legislation to help protect them and the good work they are doing,” said Hyde-Smith, chair of the Senate Pro-Life Caucus. “Their protection represents a new responsibility in a post-Roe America as more pregnancy centers are established across the country to support mothers and their babies.”
“Expectant mothers should not fear for their safety when receiving medical assistance and counseling,” said Crapo. “Political extremists across the country have made it clear that they will continue to intimidate those who visit and work at these pregnancy centers as well as continue to carry out violent attacks. This bill would provide much-needed security upgrades to these centers in Idaho and across the country, providing safety and peace of mind to health care personnel and their patients.”
“Because of the Biden administration’s politicization of the DOJ and refusal to prosecute the heinous attacks against pregnancy centers, these vital community pillars remain under threat,” said Cruz. “Given the increased threat against these life-saving support centers, we must provide them with the necessary resources to protect themselves and continue the fight to help women and babies. I’m proud to join Sen. Risch and my colleagues in doing so.”
“The Biden Administration has demonized pro-life pregnancy centers as part of its pro-abortion crusade. These centers are vital for mothers and new families, and they should be protected from violent attacks,” said Rubio.
“Since the illegal leak of the Dobbs decision last year, radical pro-abortion extremists have ramped up violent attacks on pro-life pregnancy care centers in an attempt to intimidate pro-life workers, volunteers, and the vulnerable women they serve – and the Biden Administration has turned a blind eye,” said Hawley. “It is imperative that we invest in enhanced security for these centers, so they may operate without the constant threat of violence and focus squarely on the life-saving work they do on a daily basis.”
The Pregnancy Center Security Act has received support from Heartbeat International, Students for Life Action, Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee, CatholicVote, SBA Pro-Life America, and Family Research Council.
“Heartbeat International is grateful for every effort that protects the good work of pregnancy help. The Pregnancy Center Security Act will aid in advancing effective care and safety for mothers, babies and families in the United States,” said Jor-El Godsey, President of Heartbeat International.
“There are 12 pregnancy resource centers for every abortion facility in any city. Each of those pregnancy centers offer FREE life-affirming resources to women and families in need, while the abortion industry receives more than $1.7 billion in revenue every year. It is time we started investing into healthcare centers that save lives, not end them. Students for Life Action is a firsthand witness of the empowering effect pregnancy centers have in our nation as they walk alongside vulnerable young women and families in crisis, helping them to see that there is another choice besides violence, a choice that is life-affirming and justice focused. These pregnancy centers are what give women hope, and Senator Risch’s legislation will help further that hope to reach more women and families instead of investing in Planned Parenthood’s model of death,” said Kristan Hawkins President of Students for Life Action and Students for Life of America.
“Pregnancy-help organizations provide free medical assistance, education, job training and a host of resources to women in need. These centers operate through charitable contributions and are vital to the communities they serve. Unfortunately, after the Dobb’s decision was leaked, numerous pregnancy-help organizations were vandalized, firebombed, and even destroyed,” said Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America, the nation’s largest women’s public policy organization. “The grants provided through this legislation will allow these organizations to implement security upgrades to ensure their employees and facilities are always kept safe, in order to continue serving women and their communities.”
“Pregnancy care centers are a shining beacon to women and families who find themselves in a tough situation. These centers go above and beyond the call of duty, providing services such as free pregnancy testing, ultrasounds, counseling, and education. In return they have been attacked by Democratic politicians and targeted with violence and destruction by pro-abortion zealots. Joe Biden's Justice Department has made it clear they have no interest in protecting these maternity homes, we applaud Senator Risch for stepping in to protect these valuable resources," said Tom McClusky, Director of Government Affairs, CatholicVote.
“Nearly 3,000 pregnancy centers and maternity homes nationwide equip and empower millions of women and families each year to choose life for their children. With an average satisfaction rate of 99%, these centers offer women real choices and provide millions of dollars’ worth of material assistance and vital services typically at no charge,” said Hon. Marilyn Musgrave, vice president of government affairs for SBA Pro-life America. “We applaud Sen. Risch and his colleagues for supporting these centers in carrying out their loving mission, including measures to ensure the safest and most welcoming environment for clients and workers in the face of pro-abortion hostility. We urge members on both sides of the aisle to join in supporting this bill.”
“We are grateful to Senator Risch for introducing the Pregnancy Center Security Act. In our current environment, it is more important than ever for pregnancy resource centers to be a welcoming place where women feel safe and cared for. We know that carrying an unborn child can be a beautiful and stressful time for mothers. The grants provided by the Pregnancy Center Security Act, which allow for security upgrades and improvements ensuring ADA compliance guarantee that help is as accessible and safe as possible to mothers in vulnerable situations,” said Mary Szoch, Director of the Center for Human Dignity, Family Research Council.
The Pregnancy Center Security Act would:
- Establish a grant program for pregnancy-help organizations to implement security upgrades, including the installation of security cameras and systems, and update facilities for Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance.
- Ensure organizations that perform, assist, counsel, prescribe, refer to an abortion provider, or encourage abortion do not receive federal funds.