UK – Tears & Trauma: Even Lockdown Didn’t Stop Anti-Abortion Protesters

Tears & Trauma: Even Lockdown Didn’t Stop
Anti-Abortion Protesters

Vicky Spratt
28 June 2020

It’s 8.30am and it’s already warm and muggy. 25 degrees worth of warm and muggy
to be precise. A man is shouting, his words fill the sticky air. He repeated
“every child deserves a birthday” over and over again.

He is holding a large homemade sign. It reads ‘Abortion Murders Babies’ in
large black and red lettering. He’s joined by two more men, they also have
signs. One says ‘THOU SHALL NOT MURDER’, the other declares ‘Babies are
MURDERED here’ above a pixelated image of body parts. Hours pass, they stand together.
The shouting continues. Women rush past, accompanied by friends and family,
trying to avoid them.

Continued: https://www.refinery29.com/en-gb/2020/06/9883832/rupa-huq-abortion-buffer-zones


UK – MP seeks to ban demonstrations outside abortion clinics

MP seeks to ban demonstrations outside abortion clinics

Jun 24, 2020

A bill seeking to ban demonstrations outside abortion clinics has been proposed by Labour MP Rupa Huq.

Last year, pro-life protesters lost a legal challenge against the UK's first buffer zone implemented around a clinic in Dr Huq's constituency.

Ealing Council said a 100-metre exclusion zone at the Marie Stopes centre had been put in place after women complained of being intimidated.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-53150759


Manchester’s teenage conception rate drops 62% in ten years

Manchester's teenage conception rate drops 62% in ten years

16 Jun 2020
By Billy Brake

The latest data supplied by the Manchester Clinical Commissioning Group shows a decrease in 62% teenage conceptions, from 2,562 in 2008 to 978 in 2018.

The decrease shown by the latest figures fits into a national trend observed over the same year period, with teenage pregnancies dropping by 55% across the country.

Continued: http://www.mancunianmatters.co.uk/content/160678867-manchesters-teenage-conception-rate-drops-62-ten-years


Abortions in England and Wales reach record high

Abortions in England and Wales reach record high
Particularly sharp rise among women aged 30-34, but fewer teenagers are having procedure

Denis Campbell, Health policy editor
Published on Thu 11 Jun 2020

A record number of women in England and Wales had an abortion last year, and numbers rose particularly sharply among women aged 30 and over.

A total of 207,384 procedures were carried out, official figures show, the highest number in a year since the historic vote in 1967 to legalise abortion in Britain through the Abortion Act.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jun/11/abortions-in-england-and-wales-reach-record-high


Getting an Abortion During Lockdown Is Easier Than You Think

Getting an Abortion During Lockdown Is Easier Than You Think
New telemedicine services mean that most people in the UK are now able to perform their own abortions at home.

by Beth Ashley
02 June 2020

When lockdown was introduced in the UK, no one could have predicted its scale or impact. Every aspect of normal life has been affected by it – and those seeking an abortion haven’t been exempt, either.

Ellie*, 22, became pregnant in early April. She knew that she didn’t want to continue the pregnancy but was terrified she wouldn’t be able to get a termination due to COVID-19. “There was so much in the news and on social media through March about delayed and cancelled abortions in England,” she told VICE. “People had been campaigning against the [cancellations] all over Twitter. I was terrified about what might happen to me.”

Continued: https://www.vice.com/en_uk/article/889nz4/how-to-get-abortion-during-coronavirus-lockdown-uk


MPs bring bill to ban late abortions for cleft lip, cleft palate and clubfoot

MPs bring bill to ban late abortions for cleft lip, cleft palate and clubfoot
Cross-party group proposes ending UK abortions after 24 weeks for minor disabilities

Amelia Hill
Published on Thu 28 May 2020

A cross-party group of MPs are seeking to change Britain’s abortion laws to ban late terminations that are carried out on the grounds of minor physical abnormalities.

The abortion (cleft lip, cleft palate and clubfoot) bill, which is led by the Conservative MP Fiona Bruce and supported by 13 MPs, will be presented in parliament on 3 June.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/28/mps-bring-bill-to-ban-late-abortions-for-cleft-lip-cleft-palate-and-club-foot


How the pandemic forced long-overdue abortion law reform

How the pandemic forced long-overdue abortion law reform
Sensible policy changes may leave women wondering: why wasn’t it like this before?

by Phoebe Arslanagic-Wakefield
April 22, 2020

The current crisis places us in an extraordinary state of flux and society may never return to normal. Post-Covid-19, employers may struggle to talk employees back onto their commutes and into the office, certain industries may never recover, and the government’s generous financial support packages may be hard to row back. Indeed, the changes initiated are proving highly disruptive to norms, some which have evolved over time to become meaningless shibboleths.

One such reactionary norm is that, under English law, women seeking to abort an early pregnancy (prior to ten weeks) must take the first of the two pills necessary for the termination in an abortion clinic, and only the second pill may be taken in the comfort of their own homes. Women also need the approval of two doctors to access the medication—telephone consultations are not permitted.

Continued: https://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/politics/coronavirus-covid-19-abortion-law-reform


UK – Like Everything Else, Abortion Needs To Change After This

Like Everything Else, Abortion Needs To Change After This

Vicky Spratt
16 April 2020

Was the Health Secretary Matt Hancock gaslighting women in Britain when he allowed draft legislation permitting at-home abortions during the pandemic we’re currently living through to be published and unpublished? We will never know.

In the end, because of a cacophonous campaign from abortion experts at the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) and Marie Stopes, the government did a u-turn and confirmed that, for as long as this crisis rages on, women will be able to take abortion medication in the safety and comfort of their own home after a telephone consultation with a doctor (also known as telemedicine).

Continued: https://www.refinery29.com/en-gb/2020/04/9700087/abortion-law-change-during-coronavirus


Abortion has come grudgingly to Northern Ireland in the wake of coronavirus

Abortion has come grudgingly to Northern Ireland in the wake of coronavirus
Women are still a pawn in the political game at Stormont and our rights continue to lag far behind the rest of the UK

Anna Cafolla
Mon 13 Apr 2020

Abortion law reform was officially meant to arrive in Northern Ireland on 1 April – having been previously voted on and passed through Westminster when Stormont was still languishing on its hill, all the way back in what might now feel like another astral dimension, October 2019.

In a chaotic timeline of events, Northern Ireland’s health department missed its original April deadline for providing regulations that offer solid access to abortion care. The coronavirus crisis, the ensuing lockdown and widespread pressure on health services were blamed for the delay. But with heel-dragging and wilful ignorance becoming synonymous with Northern Ireland’s leading parties, campaigners and clinicians criticised anti-choice sentiment for slowing down the implementation of abortion services. DUP and UUP assembly members had still been resisting change.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/apr/13/abortion-northern-ireland-coronavirus-women-stormont-rights


Amid COVID-19 pandemic, a landmark week for abortion care access in Northern Ireland

Amid COVID-19 pandemic, a landmark week for abortion care access in Northern Ireland

April 11, 2020
Mary McGill

Belfast — After a chaotic week that saw outcry from pro-choice campaigners and abortion providers on both sides of the Irish Sea, Northern Ireland moved to ensure abortion services will be available during the pandemic. In a statement issued to the media on Thursday, April 9, the region’s Department of Health said medical professionals were now permitted to “terminate pregnancies lawfully.” The statement also claimed that the rollout of abortion services, which were meant to have been legally available beginning March 31, had been impacted by the pandemic and “the urgent need to focus resources on preparing the health and social care system for the surge in cases.”

The government’s decision comes after a tumultuous two weeks in which abortion services were supposed to be operational yet remained inaccessible through Northern Ireland’s health service.

Continued: https://womensmediacenter.com/women-under-siege/amid-covid-19-pandemic-a-landmark-week-for-abortion-care-access-in-northern-ireland