The battle over abortion has been going on for more than 35 years. Now there's a new weapon in the pro-life movement to save the lives of the unborn.
Taking It to the Streets
A 32-foot-long, brightly colored mobile home dodged in and out of traffic and made its way down the narrow streets of New York. It's a sight you don't see every day.
But this isn't just any old RV. This one has a portable ultrasound unit onboard - and its mission is to save unborn babies.
It's called 'Operation Frontline' and it's a pro-life mobile ultrasound clinic - the first of its kind in New York. Veteran pro-life activist Chris Slattery heads the operation.
CBN News recently went for a ride in the life-saving vehicle.
"We go out to the toughest neighborhoods in the South Bronx and the most international area of Queens where there's a huge pocket of abortion clinics along a strip we call it 'Abortion Row.'"
Four days a week Slattery, along with his full time ultrasound technician and bi-lingual crisis pregnancy counselor, pull up to an abortion clinic in Bronx, New York.
They offer free ultrasounds and friendly compassionate crisis counseling to all pregnant women who are on their way to have an abortion.
"We're probably intervening with a dozen women a week who we get to take an ultrasound, talk with the counselor in either English or Spanish. We are successful probably eight out of 10 times. We're successful in turning the mother around if we can get her in to talk with us," he said.
'Operation Frontline' also reaches out to pregnant women who plan to keep their babies
Julie Beyel works with Slattery as a sidewalk counselor.
"What I do is I basically look…to see if women may be getting dropped off in a cab and I approach that woman to let them know we offer free help for pregnant women."
She says she explains to the woman that an abortion clinic does not really help women. She explains that instead "it leaves women with negative feelings - maybe feelings of guilt."
Time for a Baby Shower
Ultrasound technician Wadiya Penzellna says the results are amazing and rewarding. She says that some of the women who decide to keep their babies will return with pictures of their infants.
"I have pictures. We speak a lot, go to baby showers. It's been nice," she said.
So what's the response from the abortion clinic?
Slattery says, "There's nothing they can do except the cursing they throw at us and occasional harassment of us. We're pretty much free to do what we want on this public sidewalk."
He says the idea for a mobile pro-life center is catching on.
We're finding people are coming here to visit us to see how we're doing this from around the country," he said. "We've even had inquiries from New Zealand about opening up a mobile clinic like this."
But despite the positive results, Slattery says he has one regret.
He said, "I just wish we had thought of this many years ago. We're going go full whole hog with this now and save as many lives with this tactic as we can."
*Originally published October 10, 2007