UK abortion law is outdated, not evidence based, and prevents best practice

Hayley Webb: UK abortion law is outdated, not evidence based, and prevents best practice

We must build on the momentum of this year to ensure that women across the UK can truly have governance over their own bodies

October 30, 2018

There is an air of hopeful anticipation within the abortion rights movement. So far, 2018 has brought much cause to celebrate. In March, the 50th anniversary of the implementation of the Abortion Act marked 50 years of safe provision in the UK. Then in May came the landslide vote in favour of repealing the eighth amendment in Ireland. A victory undoubtedly in part due to the collective voice of Irish doctors who came forward in their hundreds to stand up for women, sharing their powerful stories from the frontline and debunking the abundant harmful abortion myths. June and August brought approval for home use of Misoprostol in England and Wales, meaning that women will soon be able to take the second pill for early medical abortion in the comfort of their own homes. This came as a legal challenge to home use in Scotland, which had led the way in 2017, was successfully defended.

Continued: https://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2018/10/30/hayley-webb-uk-abortion-law-is-outdated-not-evidence-based-and-prevents-best-practice/

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UK – Diana Johnson interview: “We need a modern, fit-for-purpose abortion law”

Diana Johnson interview: “We need a modern, fit-for-purpose abortion law”

Sienna Rodgers
23rd October, 2018

Labour MP Diana Johnson will today introduce a ten-minute rule bill in the House of Commons that would see abortion decriminalised. Currently, the Offences Against the Persons Act 1861 makes abortion illegal in the UK except when there is a risk to the life or health of the mother, and this legislation was only partly superseded by the Abortion Act 1967. Ahead of tabling the backbench bill, Johnson spoke to LabourList.

How did abortion become a key focus in your work as an MP?

Continued: https://labourlist.org/2018/10/diana-johnson-interview-we-need-a-modern-fit-for-purpose-abortion-law/

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Northern Ireland abortion: MPs pass bill demanding terminations legalised

Northern Ireland abortion: MPs pass bill demanding terminations legalised
Ministers including Penny Mordaunt back calls for change, raising prospect of major Cabinet row

Benjamin Kentish
Oct 23, 2018

MPs have voted in favour of legalising abortion in Northern Ireland after a number of Tory ministers broke ranks to back demands for change, creating a potential headache for Theresa May.

The House of Commons voted by 208 votes to 123 in favour of a bill introduced by Labour MP Diana Johnson that seeks to scrap 157-year-old laws that make the practice illegal.

Continued: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/abortion-northern-ireland-legalisation-mps-vote-bill-repeal-assembly-diana-johnson-a8597541.html

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Labour MPs in fresh bid to legalise abortion in Northern Ireland

Labour MPs in fresh bid to legalise abortion in Northern Ireland
Stella Creasy launches new attempt after government rebuffs move by colleague

Dan Sabbagh
Tue 23 Oct 2018

Eighty MPs have signed an amendment that aims to legalise abortion in Northern Ireland as part of a bill before the Commons on Wednesday designed to give civil servants in the region greater power in the absence of a functioning Stormont.

The amendment, put down by Labour’s Stella Creasy and Conor McGinn, would abolish the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act, still applicable in Northern Ireland, which makes obtaining or helping somebody obtain an abortion a criminal offence.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2018/oct/23/mps-support-new-amendment-to-override-stormont-northern-ireland-on-abortion

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Labour MPs to press May for Commons vote on Northern Ireland abortion ban

Labour MPs to press May for Commons vote on Northern Ireland abortion ban
Diana Johnson to table bill aimed at forcing government into allowing proper Commons vote

Dan Sabbagh
Sun 21 Oct 2018

Labour MPs will increase the pressure to end Northern Ireland’s highly restrictive Victorian-era abortion laws this week in a series of Commons votes designed to push the UK government into action.

Diana Johnson, the Hull North MP, will introduce a backbench bill on Tuesday calling for a repeal of the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act, which criminalised any woman seeking an abortion with a theoretical maximum term of life imprisonment.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/oct/21/northern-ireland-abortion-ban-commons-vote-labour-diana-johnson

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N. Ireland – Majority want abortion decriminalised in North

Majority want abortion decriminalised in North

Rebecca Black
October 11 2018

Most Britons and a large majority of people in Northern Ireland want abortion to be decriminalised in the North, two new opinion polls have shown.

A total of 65 per cent of adults in Northern Ireland agreed that terminating a pregnancy should not be a crime, while 78 per cent of Britons were in favour of decriminalisation.

Continued: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/majority-want-abortion-decriminalised-in-north-z22tth8dv

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UK government ‘must act on Northern Ireland abortion’

UK government 'must act on Northern Ireland abortion'
The UK government must "wake up" and decriminalise abortion in Northern Ireland, Tory MPs have told the BBC.

By Jean Mackenzie and Andy Smythe, BBC Victoria Derbyshire programme
10 October 2018

Anna Soubry, Nicky Morgan and Heidi Allen said Westminster must step in to protect women's human rights.

Northern Ireland's Assembly - which legislates on healthcare - collapsed 21 months ago, and a new poll suggests two-thirds of Northern Ireland citizens would support Westminster intervening.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-45719000

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Polls show broad support for Northern Ireland abortion reform

Polls show broad support for Northern Ireland abortion reform
By Lianne Kolirin, CNN
Oct 9, 2018

Story highlights
- 78% of British people would like to see abortion decriminalized in Northern Ireland, a poll found
- 65% of those living in Northern Ireland believe that having an abortion should not be a crime

(CNN)Nearly two-thirds of people in Northern Ireland -- and more than three-quarters of the UK public -- believe that abortion should be decriminalized in the country, according to polls released Wednesday by Amnesty International.

Pregnancy terminations are illegal in Northern Ireland, except in cases in which the mother's life or health is at risk. The 1967 Abortion Act, which broadly legalized the procedure in the rest of the UK, has never been extended to Northern Ireland, where an 1861 law still stands.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/09/health/northern-ireland-abortion-polls-intl/index.html

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UK – 50 MPs Call For Women In England To Be Able To Take Abortion Pills At Home

50 MPs Call For Women In England To Be Able To Take Abortion Pills At Home
Women can begin to miscarry on their way home from clinics, under current regulations.

By Nicola Slawson
July 16, 2018

MPs are calling on the new health and social care secretary to allow women in England to take the second pill required for an abortion at home.

In a letter, which has gained cross-party support from more than 50 MPs, Matt Hancock has been urged to remove the restriction, which requires women to take both drugs (mifepristone and misoprostol) at a licensed clinic or hospital.

Continued: https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/more-than-50-mps-urge-matt-hancock-to-let-women-in-england-take-abortion-pills-at-home_uk_5b4c6c91e4b0e7c958fd04be

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The Anti-Abortion Lobby In The UK Has More Power Than You Realise

The Anti-Abortion Lobby In The UK Has More Power Than You Realise
Jeremy Hunt's refusal to extend at-home abortions to women in England has nothing to do with women's welfare, and everything to do with politics

by Vicky Spratt
July 4, 2018

Donald Trump really has a way with words doesn’t he? As the news that Supreme Court judge Anthony Kennedy was retiring, women’s hearts raced. This is the Hand Maid’s Tale-esque moment American women had feared since the news broke that Trump had beaten Hillary: it is the right’s chance to undo Roe versus Wade: the landmark ruling that legalised abortion in America.

What has Trump said about it? Simply, when it comes to replacing Kennedy he plans to pick ‘a great one’ who, presumably, will be about as great as America is right now under his watch. Perhaps ‘great’ for Trump is a bit like ‘Brexit’ for Theresa May – a catch all phrase for something chaotically bad.

Continued: https://graziadaily.co.uk/life/real-life/the-anti-abortion-lobby-in-the-uk-has-more-power-than-you-realise/

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