It has generated strong debate, with some Mason meetings over the past few months lasting several hours and as many as 60 people speaking to the council. Some meetings became raucous, with one meeting in August ending early because of disruptions by the audience.
In addition to banning anyone from procuring or performing an abortion of any type and at any stage of pregnancy, it also bans anyone from transporting anyone to an abortion provider; giving instructions via telephone, internet or other communication method how to perform a self-administered abortion; giving abortion doula services; coercing or pressuring a mother to have an abortion against her will; or possessing or distributing abortion-inducing drugs in the city.
The ordinance has an affirmative defense, though, if the abortion was in response to a life-threatening physical condition aggravated by, caused by or arising from a pregnancy that places the woman in danger of death or serious risk of substantial impairment of a major bodily function unless an abortion is performed, as certified by a physician.
It does not permit prosecuting or penalizing the mother of an unborn child that has been aborted or the pregnant woman who seeks to abort her unborn child.