Hoag Abortion Ban Draws Hundreds of Demonstrators

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A Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian supporter (left) and a protestor wave signs at each other outside the hospital on Thursday.  — Photos by Sara Hall
A Hoag supporter (left) and a protestor wave signs at each other outside the hospital on Thursday.
— Photos by Sara Hall

A few hundred people showed up Thursday afternoon outside Hoag, some in support and some in protest of the hospital’s recent decision to ban elective abortions.

Several pro-choice and women’s groups planned the demonstration in objection to Hoag’s ban on offering elective abortions, a move that comes not long after joining forces with  St. Joseph Health System. Also on hand was a large number of pro-life counter-demonstrators in support of Hoag’s decision.

The crowd gathered on the four corners of Hospital Road and Placentia Avenue.

Passionate supporters on both sides of the debate carried signs reading “Women’s Healthcare at Risk,” “Life Begins at Conception,” “Who’s Calling the Shots at Hoag? Hoag… or St. Joseph’s?” “I Support Hoag’s Right to Choose,” “Shame on Hoag,” and “Thank You Hoag,” among many others.

Cars would drive by and honk as demonstrators chanted and cheered.

Hoag hospital officials were also standing near the demonstration answering questions.

There were a few minor altercations, but Newport Beach Police Department officers were on hand to handle any incidents.

— Photos by Sara Hall

    All four corners of Hospital Road and Placentia Avenue were crowded with demonstrators on Thursday.
All four corners of Hospital Road and Placentia Avenue were crowded with demonstrators on Thursday.
All four corners of Hospital Road and Placentia Avenue were crowded on Thursday.
All four corners of Hospital Road and Placentia Avenue were crowded with demonstrators on Thursday.
A mixture of both Hoag supporters and protestors congregate at the corner of Hospital Road and Placentia Avenue on Thursday.
A mixture of both Hoag supporters and protestors congregate at the corner of Hospital Road and Placentia Avenue on Thursday.
Hoag supporters and protestors gather outside the hospital on Thursday.
Hoag supporters and protestors gather outside the hospital on Thursday.
Protestors look on and chant as a Hoag supporter drives by.
Protestors look on and chant as a Hoag supporter drives by.
Hoag protestors (left to right) Yara Cuetara, co-president of Americans United for Separation of Church & State, Orange County chapter, and Erin Morgan of San Diego chant outside the hospital on Thursday.
Hoag protestors (left to right) Yara Cuetara, co-president of Americans United for Separation of Church & State, Orange County chapter, and Erin Morgan of San Diego chant outside the hospital on Thursday.
Pro-life demonstrators cheer in support of Hoag Hospital.
Pro-life demonstrators cheer in support of Hoag Hospital.
The crowd on both sides of the cause had passionate supporters of all ages, including these two girls.
The crowd on both sides of the cause had passionate supporters of all ages, including these two girls.
Matthew Kennicott of Oceanside recites verses from the bible as he talks with pro-choice supporters and Hoag protestors.Matthew Kennicott of Oceanside recites verses from the bible as he talks with pro-choice supporters and Hoag protestors.
Matthew Kennicott of Oceanside recites verses from the bible as he talks with pro-choice supporters and Hoag protestors.
Pro-choice supporter Ethan Simonoff passionately talks with pro-life advocate Len Beckman of Anaheim, as Simonoff's mother, Andy looks on in the background.
Pro-choice supporter Ethan Simonoff passionately talks with pro-life advocate Len Beckman of Anaheim, as Simonoff’s mother, Andy looks on in the background.
Pro-life demonstrator Paco Frausto of Huntington Beach (left) and pro-choice supporter Erin Morgan of San Diego argue as they wave signs at each other.
Pro-life demonstrator Paco Frausto of Huntington Beach (left) and pro-choice supporter Erin Morgan of San Diego argue as they wave signs at each other.
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