Mark Hayward's City Matters: Clinic neighbor worries about expanding buffer zone
Greg Salts and his wife, Febie, and daughter, Hannah, 9, of Manchester, are concerned with the possibility of a new law requiring protesters, seen in the background, to gather at least 25 feet from the Planned Parenthood located across the street from his Pennacook Street home. (JOSH GIBNEY/UNION LEADER)
But that territory may soon be moving to the front of the house of Greg Salts, who has nothing to do with abortions.
Salts lives on the densely populated Pennacook Street, across from the Planned Parenthood clinic where abortions take place. He bought the house 10 years ago, and he said the protests and confrontations, while not far away, were at least across the street.
"What I am concerned about is pro-life picketers with graphic signs standing on the sidewalk directly in front of my house and leaving the impression that I am an abortion doctor whom they're protesting," Salts said. "Planned Parenthood has bullet-proof windows. I don't."
"If they're here, I'm going to be running out screaming at these people," he said outside his apartment.
"I don't think we should be across the street. We should be in front of this place," Jeanne Szulc said last week.
Salts said he's worried about the safety of his family.
(Salts is a former Republican state representative, who served a term in the early 2000s. Pictures on the wall of his house portray his Christian faith, but he said abortion was never his issue. Most recently, he pressed Second District Congresswoman Annie Kuster about Benghazi during a public forum, and she was criticized for saying Libya isn't in the Middle East.)
Asked about the neighbors, she said they should be concerned about the Pray for Life Center, which opened in a first-floor apartment next door to Salts about year ago. It's a gathering space for protesters, she said, and their numbers have increased since it opened, Frizzell said.
What it comes down to is that the 20-block of Pennacook Street — a residential zone — was never meant for a Planned Parenthood clinic.
Frizzell said the location is great. It's visible, accessible, and close to other medical facilities.
Mark Hayward's City Matters appears Thursdays in the New Hampshire Union Leader and on UnionLeader.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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