Anti-abortion protests near schools concern Vancouver parents

Concerned parents reached out to KATU News over demonstrations taking place near schools in the Battle Ground School District.

Protesters with Vancouver Abolitionist Society were outside of Prairie High School this week promoting an anti-abortion agenda with pamphlets and graphic images.

"Our primary goal, although we're out here with abortion imagery, is to spread the gospel and that's what we intend on doing," said Crystal Chavez, one of the demonstrators.

However, some parents are not on board with the idea of the demonstrators being near schools. Some parents claim their children are being harassed and bullied.

"They've kind of been bombarding every entrance next to the school parking lot so no one can get on or off without being confronted by them," said parent Kim Detter. "A child should not be bullied going to and from school by anybody."

On Wednesday night, parents received a call from the district alerting them to the demonstrations. District officials said they didn't notify parents sooner because they didn't find out beforehand about the protests.

KATU News contacted the school district on Thursday to get its response to the demonstrations. The district said the protesters work with local law enforcement to obtain permits to protest.

The demonstrators are not allowed on school property. The Clark County Sheriff's Office has a school resource officer there to make sure the protesters don't come on school property.

The district said the demonstrations are not school sponsored or endorsed.

Some parents were also worried about the GoPro cameras that the demonstrators are wearing. The protesters said the cameras are for their own protection and also so they can evaluate how they're delivering their message.

The Vancouver Abolitionist Society says they've already demonstrated outside of Mountain View, Evergreen and Battle Ground high schools. They plan to be outside of every Clark County high school and eventually come to Portland-area schools.

Parents with questions can contact the Battle Ground School District Office at 360-885-5300.