• Charlotte considers noise buffers around schools, medical facilities, churches

    By: Joe Bruno

    Updated:

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - On Wednesday, the Charlotte City Council discussed ways to reduce noise outside a southeast Charlotte abortion clinic.

    Council members are considering an ordinance that would affect protesters around medical facilities, churches and schools, and are recommending a 200-foot noise buffer for those buildings as well.

    [ALSO READ: City considers changes outside Charlotte abortion clinic]

    For years, Channel 9 has reported on the dozens of protesters who regularly set up outside the women's clinic on Latrobe Drive.

    Officials with the clinic have said those protesters harass and intimidate women who go to the clinic.

    An attorney for the city said the noise buffer would not take away protesters' First Amendment rights.

    Councilman Ed Driggs was opposed to the changes. He believes the motivation is to solely target the protesters outside the clinic.

    But Councilman Justin Harlow said the ordinance is not a smokescreen, and that the changes are proactive.

    “This goes so much beyond abortion or not,” Harlow said.

    The noise ordinance changes passed committee on Wednesday, and the full council will vote on the changes in the coming months.

    There will also be public comment at a later date.

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