Campaigners await UK decision on abortion clinic buffer zones

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Campaigners await UK decision on abortion clinic buffer zones
Pro-choice activists say they expect announcement from Home Office within weeks

Caroline Davies
Mon 13 Aug 2018

Campaigners calling for buffer zones to prevent harassment and abuse of women accessing abortion centres are expecting a Home Office announcement within weeks.

The Labour MP Rupa Huq, who leads a cross-party campaign calling for national legislation following the model of the UK’s first abortion clinic safe zone in Ealing, west London, said the home secretary had pledged an announcement in September.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/aug/13/abortion-clinic-buffer-zones-campaigners-await-uk-decision

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MPs call for exclusion zones around abortion clinics to stop protests

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MPs call for exclusion zones around abortion clinics to stop protests
Home secretary urged to follow lead of Ealing council in effort to prevent harassment

Dan Sabbagh
Thu 31 May 2018

Dozens of MPs are demanding Sajid Javid introduce exclusion zones outside abortion clinics in England and Wales to prevent protesters from harassing women, ahead of a court case that could see the sole existing safety area scrapped.

Rupa Huq, who represents Ealing Central and Acton, accused the home secretary of sitting on a review started by his predecessor Amber Rudd, which she and 160 other MPs and peers from all parties believe could halt emotive anti-abortion protests that take place outside an estimated 42 clinics.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/31/mps-call-for-exclusion-zones-around-abortion-clinics-protests-harassment

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Tory deputy chair attacks MPs over Northern Ireland abortion law

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Tory deputy chair attacks MPs over Northern Ireland abortion law
James Cleverly says calls for Westminster to legislate in Northern Ireland are ‘party political game playing’

Jessica Elgot and Peter Walker
Wed 30 May 2018

Conservative party deputy chair James Cleverly has hit out at MPs campaigning for a change in Northern Irish abortion law, accusing Labour of exploiting the issue for party political gain.

Cleverly made his attack despite the fact that at least 13 female Conservative MPs have publicly supported a change to the law in Northern Ireland, which has some of the most restrictive rules on abortion in the world.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/30/tory-deputy-chair-attacks-mps-over-northern-ireland-abortion-law

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Britain enforces first abortion clinic exclusion zone

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Britain enforces first abortion clinic exclusion zone

Apr 23, 2018

LONDON (AFP) - A ban on pro-life protests outside an abortion clinic in London came into force on Monday (April 23) in a first that pro-choice campaigners hope will set a precedent for the country.

The local authority in Ealing, west London, imposed an exclusion zone after claims that women and staff at the Marie Stopes clinic were being intimidated and harassed by vigils that have been held outside the building for more than 20 years.

Continued: https://www.straitstimes.com/world/europe/britain-enforces-first-abortion-clinic-exclusion-zone

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UK – Ealing’s abortion clinic safe zone is a win – but the fight for rights isn’t over

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Ealing’s abortion clinic safe zone is a win – but the fight for rights isn’t over
Years of harassment have come to an end with this ruling. Ireland’s referendum, meanwhile, is mired in dirty tactics

Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett
Wed 11 Apr 2018

Last month, Alison (not her real name) says she was accosted on her way into the Marie Stopes clinic in Ealing to discuss a termination. She was approached by a man asking her for help; it was only when he started showing her anti-choice leaflets that she twigged that he was a protester. As she went to leave, he put his hand towards her, saying that he wanted to give her something. In his palm was a tiny model foetus.

Now, in a landmark decision, Ealing council voted to instigate a buffer zone around the clinic, the first of its kind. This radical implementation of a public spaces protection order – now also being considered by other councils – marks an important first step in protecting the rights of women from this kind of harassment.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/apr/11/ealing-abortion-clinic-safe-zone-ireland-referendum

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UK – Protesters could be banned from a London abortion clinic, in a historic council vote

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Protesters could be banned from a London abortion clinic, in a historic council vote

Verity Ryan
9 April 2018

Protests could be banned outside an abortion clinic for the first time in a bid to stop women and staff from being harassed and intimidated.

Ealing Council in West London will hold a vote on Tuesday evening on whether to introduce a "buffer zone" around a Marie Stopes clinic after a public consultation gathered overwhelming support.

Continued: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2018/04/09/protestors-could-banned-london-abortion-clinic-historic-council/

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Government ‘using devolution as an excuse’ to avoid abortion reform in Northern Ireland, campaigners warn

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Government 'using devolution as an excuse' to avoid abortion reform in Northern Ireland, campaigners warn
Exclusive: Theresa May accused of being ‘held hostage’ by DUP

Lizzy Buchan Political Correspondent
March 16, 2018

The Government is using “devolution as an excuse” to avoid liberalising abortion laws in Northern Ireland, campaigners claim, saying Theresa May is being “held hostage” by her alliance with the DUP.

Ministers have been accused of “extraordinary” inconsistency in their stance, after parliamentary questions revealed that the UK Government might consider imposing same-sex marriage in the province but that it would not intervene on the issue of abortion.

Continued: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/government-devolution-northern-ireland-abortion-reform-theresa-may-dup-a8258841.html

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MPs from all sides call for abortion law in N Ireland to be relaxed

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MPs from all sides call for abortion law in N Ireland to be relaxed
Letter follows UN declaration that forcing women in Northern Ireland to travel to England is human rights infringement

Jane Martinson
Wed 7 Mar 2018

More than 100 MPs and peers from all parties have written to the home secretary, Amber Rudd, calling for women in Northern Ireland to be allowed access to abortion services locally rather than having to come to England.

The letter, signed by 131 parliamentarians including eight Conservatives such as the former education secretary Justine Greening and the former chancellor Ken Clarke, the former Liberal leader David Steel and the shadow home secretary, Yvette Cooper, follows a UN declaration that forcing women to travel for an abortion is an infringement of their human rights.

continued: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/mar/07/mps-from-all-sides-call-for-abortion-law-in-n-ireland-to-be-relaxed

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UK: Why buffer zones around abortion clinics do not threaten the right to protest

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Why buffer zones around abortion clinics do not threaten the right to protest
February 13, 2018
Arianne Shahvisi

Ealing council in West London could soon set up a buffer zone to limit the harassment faced by patients of a local abortion clinic. The clinic is run by the reproductive health charity Marie Stopes, one of many abortion providers across the UK regularly targeted by anti-abortion protestors. In mid-January, councillors voted to launch a public consultation about the creation of a Public Space Protection Order, or buffer zone, around the clinic.

Common forms of anti-abortion protest include public prayer, hymns, and chanting. Protesters also distribute leaflets exaggerating the risks of abortion, display posters including images of aborted foetuses, strew

continued: https://theconversation.com/why-buffer-zones-around-abortion-clinics-do-not-threaten-the-right-to-protest-90371

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UK: Interested parties invited to provide information on protests outside abortion clinics

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Interested parties invited to provide information on protests outside abortion clinics

Latest step in a review announced by Home Secretary Amber Rudd in November
Published 17 January 2018
From: Home Office

The Home Office is seeking views from interested parties about alleged harassment and intimidating behaviour near abortion clinics in England and Wales.

It is the latest step in the review, announced by Home Secretary Amber Rudd in November, following reports that women have experienced intimidation from protesters when visiting family planning clinics to seek information, advice and services from medical professionals.

Continued: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/interested-parties-invited-to-provide-information-on-protests-outside-abortion-clinics?mc_cid=a82b37b8ad&mc_eid=daef22644f

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