The Justice Department says it will safeguard women seeking abortion in Texas after a contentious law was passed there, The Hill reports.
Attorney General Merrick Garland stated in a press statement that the DOJ will examine “all options” to fight the new Texas legislation, adding that they will give assistance for women in the Lone Star State who are still considering abortions.
When an abortion clinic or a reproductive health facility is attacked, the department will give federal law enforcement help. To discuss our enforcement authorities, Garland said in the statement that he had contacted U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and FBI field offices around the country.
Violence against people seeking or providing reproductive health care, physical obstruction, or property damage in violation of the FACE Act would not be tolerated by the DOJ, he added.
According to the DOJ statement, the FACE Act bans the use or threat of force, as well as physical hindrance, against a person seeking or providing reproductive procedures.
Damage to a health institution that offers reproductive health care is likewise prohibited under the legislation, which was passed into law in 1994.
The action by the Department of Justice comes in the wake of the outcry to Texas’ new abortion legislation, which went into force on Wednesday.
The bill, passed by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, effectively prohibits nearly all abortions after a fetal heartbeat is found, which usually occurs at six weeks into a pregnancy.
In a 5-4 decision on Wednesday, the Supreme Court refused to invalidate Texas’ new abortion legislation.