EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- The debate over keeping abortion in America legal was taken to the streets across the United States and here in the Chippewa Valley Tuesday.
Just outside of the Federal Courthouse in Downtown Eau Claire, local #StoptheBans protesters peacefully gathered to stand up against anti-abortion laws.
“I saw it on Facebook and decided to show my support,” says protest participant, Amber Heller.
The clash over abortion rights recently heightened as new state laws were enacted in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri, Mississippi and Ohio, which restrict or even ban abortion gain support across the country.
The battle over abortion in the spotlight 40 years after U.S. Supreme Court Case Roe v.s. Wade legalized the procedure.
On Tuesday, a seemingly first-time abortion rights protester wearing pink Crocs and blonde pigtails enjoyed the view from her stroller as she held a sign that read “My Body, My Choice.”
Just a few feet away stood Sandee Kosmo.
Raising her “WE ARE NOT ‘OVARY-ACTING’” sign high above her head, Kosmo tells her young neighbor she never thought she’d have to do this again.
“When I was back at the University myself we were fighting for these rights,” she said.
“I thought we had finished that in the 70's and now we just seem to be going back” she adds.
Surrounded by the people who responded to her Facebook event, local rally organizer and sign creator, Mishka Winn shared her concerns about if the Badger State became a part of the growing list.
“If we don't stand up and try to do something soon it could be a very slippery slope that could lead to the loss of rights for a lot of people,” says Winn.
Amidst a sea of women protesting the right to their uterus is Mike Lindsay. With his bright red “Wisconsin Solidarity" t-shirt paired with his “I heart Repro Rights" sign, he smiles over to his neigbors huddled on the sidewalk.
“Women’s rights and human rights,” says Lindsay. “That's what this is about so I want to support that.”
Celebrating the turnout Tuesday, Amanda Heller said, “We’re standing out here, we’re letting our voice be heard.”
She adds, “I'm proud of Eau Claire for being able to say 'We don't want this to happen,' and to do a peaceful protest about it.”