The next abortion clinic?

March 02, 2011|By Michael Schwanke | KWCH 12 Eyewitness News

(WICHITA, Kan.) — Since Doctor George Tiller was killed, Wichita has been without an abortion clinic.

Now, one local doctor says she's ready to open a one.

Doctor Mila Means, a family physician operating now out an office on East Harry, has quickly gained national attention.

She recently appeared on MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show to talk about her intentions, protests, and threats.

Means wouldn’t do an interview with FactFinder 12, but her office manager did.  We asked her when Doctor Means plans to open the clinic.

“Right now until we have a building set up and we finish the training we would like to in the next couple of months, but it all depends on having a building,” says Andrea Hamel.

Finding a building has proved difficult.

The owners of her current office space took her to court to stop her from performing abortions there.

Her other consideration at 2911 E. Douglas was met with heavy protests.

“We're asking Mila to please have a change of mind and we’re asking the citizens of Wichita to please do everything you can to convince Mila that Wichita doesn't want abortion,” says Rob Rotola with Operation Save America.
Rotola was one of many people who protested in front of the Douglas building.

Mean's attorney, and former Doctor George Tiller attorney, Lee Thompson, calls it harassment.

“I don't think there can be any doubt this pattern of activity repeats itself,” says Thompson.

“It’s a pattern…consistent pattern of intimidation, fear and violence,” says Thompson talking in general about challenges abortion providers face.

Means’ office says she is ready to protect herself, employees, and patients from threats. Hamel says the office is working with the FBI and Wichita Police Department.

“It manifests itself…starting with protest and continues by following employees to their home and intimidating vendors and people who do business with abortion clinics,” says Thompson.

Despite the protests and difficulty finding a building, Means’ office says it’s moving forward.

Hamel says they have no intention of opening a clinic in Doctor Tiller’s building, and haven’t even asked.

She says Doctor Means is currently training in Kansas City.

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