EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – El Paso community members voiced their concerns after Mayor Dee Margo issued a pro-life proclamation over the weekend.
This past weekend, the proclamation was presented at a pro-life rally with some city reps saying they were completely unaware of it. That left many El Pasoans feeling divided over the process.
However, the proclamation was not included in the regular meeting agenda.
In today’s City Council, many El Pasoan’s on both sides of the spectrum shared their personal beliefs on a proclamation that left many divided.
Those who are pro-life said they were honored to have the Mayor’s recognition, however, those who are pro-choice said proclamations like these should never be made without public input.
“Abortion is a topic that ignites two polarized sides. It’s important obviously that any person will be given a space to speak and share their opinions. I believe though that in the case of a proclamation aimed at representing in an entire city, that proclamation should never be made without public input,” Xochitl Rodriguez, Director of Community Affairs with the Office of State Senator Jose Rodriguez shared.
“In the local pro-life movement we have lots of people working to provide support. Free resources, life affirming care to women and couples facing crisis pregnancies, who often go unrecognized because of the controversy surrounding the issue. So it just really meant a lot to us to have the Mayor recognize us,” Mark Cavaliere, Executive Director of Southwest Coalition for Life said.
A spokesperson with the re-opened Planned Parenthood in El Paso also spoke out about the proclamation on behalf of its patients.
“This proclamation doesn’t reflect the views of the entire community. Our patients views are not represented so I think that’s why so many were here today because this isn’t just one opinion there’s a lot of community support out there and that’s what was reflected,” Sarah Wheat, Spokesperson for Planned Parenthood El Paso said.
After listening to both sides, Council notified to the public the proclamation will be re-issued, and the language will remove, “…the Council of the City of El Paso”, only being left proclaimed by the Mayor.
“Certainly we were pleased to hear in the end of public comment today that the actual word City Council will be removed from the proclamation. It is always a concern when there is not a public process, but a public statement is made by elected officials,” Rodriguez said.
The Council is expected to review and discuss the process the Mayor has when it comes to issuing proclamations as per city charter on February 4th.