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Santa Clara County prepares for influx of out-of-state abortion seekers

Santa Clara County prepares for influx of out-of-state abortion seekers 01:54

SANTA CLARA (KPIX 5) -- Santa Clara County is planning for an expected influx of out-of-state women seeking abortions because of the likelihood of Roe v. Wade being overturned.

"This is unprecedented time," said Catherine Schott of Planned Parenthood Mar Monte in San Jose.

Planned Parenthood says it wasn't long after states like Texas started enacting their own abortion restrictions that a steady stream of out-of-state patients began coming to this San Jose clinic to end their pregnancies.

"We have already provided abortion services to patients from Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Louisiana, Arkansas, Georgia and Texas just to name a few," Schott said.

"Planned Parenthood has already seen 80 patients from out of state, and from all over the country. We have over 20 states that when Roe V. Wade is overturned women will have no access to reproductive health services like abortion," said Supervisor Cindy Chavez, who authored a measure to provide a one-time $3 million county funding bump for Planned Parenthood to expand space and services, including mental health services for young people.

"It's going to expand capacity because one of the challenges Planned Parenthood has been the buildings are small and constrained and they need more treatment rooms," Chavez said.

But not everyone was on board with funding abortions for people who don't live here.

"You're spending taxpayer money, not your own money but taxpayer money to take care of the rest of the country. I take strong exception to that," said resident David Bunger.

The Board voted unanimously to approve the funding as it, along with the State of California seeks to become a refuge for women who may now have to cross state lines to find safe abortion options.

"We have to prepare for a possible influx of patients seeking those services here and we have to do so in a way that fosters partnership with the state," said Supervisor Susan Ellenberg.

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