ALLENTOWN, Pa. - Allentown Councilman Josh Siegel is introducing a package of ordinances that seek to protect abortion access in the city.

The ordinances would:

- Create a 15-foot buffer zone around facilities where abortion is provided.

- Shield out-of-state abortion seekers from prosecution.

- De-prioritize abortion prosecution if Pennsylvania makes abortion illegal.

- Prevent pregnancy crisis centers from disseminating false information.

"What I'm trying to do right here with these ordinances is make sure that we build a coalition of Republicans and independents and Democrats, because most people agree that we should not be turning the clock back on reproductive rights and reproductive justice," said Siegel.

Siegel rejects the notion he's introducing the ordinances in case the state elects a Republican governor. He says most council members are backing him on this.

But Council Vice President Edward Zucal is not one of them. Zucal says abortion is not an issue the council should be considering, calling the ordinances political pandering.

"It's just a state thing. If anyone's going to control what's gonna happen with this, it's going to be the state. This is not something that Allentown needs to be dealing with," said Zucal.

Zucal also questions whether city council has the legal authority to tell the police department which laws to prioritize and enforce. Zucal says he and Councilman Daryl Hendricks will try to table the ordinances for now.

But Siegel says they don't have the votes.

If the ordinances survive, they could be considered for approval by September.

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