Firebombed crisis pregnancy center in Buffalo to reopen next month

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An anti- abortion crisis pregnancy center in Buffalo, New York, believed to have been firebombed last month will reopen its doors to customers Aug. 1.

CompassCare renovated its facility, repairing its scorched walls and shattered windows over recent weeks, with plans to break ground on a new edition of the facility aimed at expanding its services during its reopening event next month.

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“It’s encouraging to me to know that the church and the generosity of the people of God and Buffalo came together to rebuild this facility so quickly and so professionally,” the Rev. Jim Harden, CEO of CompassCare, told the Washington Examiner. “The outpouring of generosity from around the state and nation — is just humbling.”

During the early morning hours of June 7, police and firefighters arrived at the CompassCare facility, which was engulfed in smoke. The words “Jane Was Here” were etched on the exterior of the facility — the markings of the shadowy pro-abortion rights extremist movement Jane’s Revenge.

No one was injured in the attack, but the devastation inflicted on the facility rendered it unusable. The company also has centers in Rochester and Albany and directed patients there while it rushed to repair the Buffalo facility. It also quickly established other makeshift locations nearby in Buffalo to conduct its operations while it refurbished the facility.

Crisis pregnancy centers like CompassCare seek to assist women who have had their lives disrupted by unplanned pregnancies. They offer services such as ultrasounds and pregnancy consultations with the underlying objective of steering pregnant women away from abortion.

The repairs at the center cost roughly $250,000, but volunteers and donations helped CompassCare swing the expense, according to Harden. The CEO took note of the 52-day period to finish repairs and drew a comparison with the 52 days it took to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem in the book of Nehemiah in the Bible.

CompassCare has taken drastic measures to bolster its security apparatus to fend off any future attacks, Harden added without divulging specifics. During the opening ceremony, CompassCare is expected to unveil new details of the attack. So far, no one has been arrested, and authorities believe the fire was caused by at least one Molotov cocktail, Harden explained.

The June arson came amid a wave of attacks targeting anti-abortion facilities and crisis pregnancy centers across the country following the leaked Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization opinion that signaled the high court would soon ax a woman’s constitutional right to abortion access nationwide. The following month, the Supreme Court did just that and overturned precedents first set in Roe v. Wade.

Following the attack, CompassCare decided to expand its facility’s capacity by 30% in anticipation of an influx of new patients amid a flurry of restrictive abortion laws being enacted across the country. Harden noted that the facility had been considering an expansion for some time, but the firebombing, coupled with the overturning of Roe, ultimately pushed them to follow through.

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CompassCare is inviting Gov. Kathy Hochul (D-NY) and Attorney General Letitia James to the reopening ceremony. Thus far, there’s been no response or indication that either will attend, according to Harden. About a week after the center was set ablaze, Hochul had signed a bill establishing a task force to investigate crisis pregnancy centers in the state. Weeks later, James implored Google to crack down on the prevalence of “fake pregnancy centers” in its search results.

“We wanted to invite Kathy Hochul and Letitia James and anyone else that are outspoken adversaries of pregnancy centers — of which they know nothing,” Harden said. “I think that they have an obligation to see what the citizens of New York are doing to help women have their babies. It is quite amazing.”