GRAPELAND, Texas (KETK) – Grapeland has passed a city ordinance outlawing abortion within the city. It is now one of 18 so called sanctuary cities for the unborn in the nation.

“We had residents in our community who approached me wanting to see abortion outlawed in our community. It caught me off guard at first, but I was elected as the mayor of Grapeland to listen to the people,” Mayor Mitchell Woody said.

Before the ordinance passed, Woody said he met with Mark Lee Dickson, director of Right To Life East Texas, and mayors of other cities that passed a similar ordinance, including Waskom, Rusk and Big Spring.

“Each one of them, all having passed the ordinance a year or more ago, have no regret for passing the ordinance,” Woody said. “Our city attorney also looked at the ordinance and saw no problem with it. This is an ordinance which is backed by attorneys across the state of Texas and has the support of many of our state senators and representatives.”

He said state legislators told him passing the ordinance was a preventive measure which cities can take to make sure abortion does not legally take place in their cities.

“You may think it will never happen in your city, but there are lots of things in our cities which we thought would never be here,” the mayor said. “Our city councils have a choice to make and
I expect that we will probably be seeing many more cities make the choice to outlaw abortion.”

Grapeland’s ordinance states: “It shall be unlawful for any person to procure or perform an abortion of any type and at any stage of pregnancy in the City of Grapeland.”

It establishes fines against the abortionist and anyone who aids and abets the abortionist.

If the city finds itself in a lawsuit because of the ordinance, the former Solicitor General
of Texas, Jonathan F. Mitchell, has agreed to represent the city for free, said information from the city.