Anger at speed of progress on buffer zones at abortion clinics

Sept 27, 2023
By Craig Williams, BBC Scotland

Pro-choice activists are calling on MSPs to speed up the creation of buffer zones around Scotland's abortion clinics.

The Scottish government is backing a bill which would ban anti-abortion groups from gathering outside clinics.

But campaigners for buffer zones say Scotland is being left behind the rest of the UK.


UK – Pro-choice campaigners deface anti-abortion stand at Bristol Freshers’ Fair

‘It was really weird that there was not a single female face on the stall’

Sep 24, 2023
Sapphire Hope News

Pro-choice activists dismantled the anti-abortion ‘Students for Life’ stall at Bristol’s Freshers’ Fair on Friday.

The pro-life stand, staffed predominantly by men, was approached by three protestors who began taking down pro-life signs.

Two female students from the group unveiled a large banner which read: “Abortion is a Human Right”.


UK – Calls to change ‘archaic’ abortion law as fifth woman faces court

Hannah Al-Othman and Megan Agnew
Sunday September 24 2023

A woman who has appeared in court accused of having an illegal abortion is the fifth reported to have been prosecuted this year.

The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is accused of procuring “poison” — the abortion drugs mifepristone and misoprostol — with intent to cause her own miscarriage. The offence, under section 58 of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861, is alleged to have been committed in November 2020, during the second coronavirus lockdown.


UK – Inside the anti-abortion protests plaguing clinics amid buffer zone delays

Anti-abortion protests and calls to the police have ramped up since so-called buffer zones were voted in, writes Maya Oppenheim

Sept 16, 2023
Maya Oppenheim

Standing outside a Chinese takeaway plastered with funfair adverts in south London, two women can be seen clutching pink and blue plastic rosary beads as they solemnly recite prayers under their breath. In front of them, a framed print of Mary, the mother of Jesus, is strapped to an easel next to a sign which reads “Love them both” and a photo of a smiling baby.

“Pregnant, Need Help?” another poster reads. “Housing Help, Financial support, Moral support offered here, Just ask us or call 0800 096 2518”. The women have set up camp opposite an abortion clinic in Brixton to protest against terminations being legal in the UK. Across a busy road, another member of their group stands directly outside the clinic clasping leaflets to hand to those going inside.


UK – Home Office delay on abortion clinic buffer zones leaves council to act alone

Manchester extends own measures to prevent women from being harassed after legislation delays

Tobi Thomas
Fri 15 Sep 2023

Manchester city council has decided to extend its own measures for preventing women from being harassed when visiting abortion clinics due to delays in government legislation on buffer zones coming into effect.

The Public Order Act, which received royal assent in May, included an amendment which makes it a criminal offence across England and Wales to harass, obstruct or interfere with any woman attending an abortion clinic.

Protesters found guilty of breaching the buffer zones – which would extend 150 metres from the clinics – could be prosecuted and face a fine. Before the amendment passed earlier this year, local councils had taken their own measures to prevent the intimidation and harassment of women visiting abortion clinics.


Teen Pregnancy Plateaued, Abortion Through the Roof: UK Sexual Health in 2023

Population Matters
Dr. Rebecca Foljambe (edited transcript of presentation at Population Matters’ World Population Day webinar on education)

Where it all started for me was that I was a jobbing GP in the Midlands. One day a week I went over to the school across the road. They have well over 3000 children across this big academy and they presented me with a list of girls, that they deemed to be ‘at risk’ – there were well over 200 girls on that list.

We took seven or eight girls for seven or eight weeks at a time, giving them the information and, we hoped, some more confidence in caring for themselves in terms of their relationships and sexual health.  The sessions worked around the topics of STIs, sexual health, body health, wellbeing, gender-based violence and healthy relationships. Over the space of a couple of years, we worked with over 100 girls, and it was incredibly rewarding.


Scotland – Doctors warn about social media link to abortion rise

Sept 5, 2023
By Katie McEvinney, BBC Scotland news

Misinformation about contraception on social media may be contributing to Scotland's record high abortion figures, doctors have told the BBC.

The number of terminations carried out in Scotland rose by almost a fifth between 2021 and 2022. For the first time in 14 years, the number of 16 to 19-year-olds accessing abortion services also increased.

There are concerns this is being driven in part by false and misleading information on apps such as TikTok.


UK – Protesters on the streets to defend abortion rights

Four women in the last eight months have been prosecuted in Britain for having an abortion

By Sophie Squire, Socialist Worker
Saturday 02 September 2023

Around 500 pro-choice supporters confronted bigots who took part in an anti-abortion march in London on Saturday. Thousands joined the anti-abortion march, which happens every year. They were boosted by recent anti-choice prosecutions in Britain and restrictive laws across the world.

Protester Amity told Socialist Worker that anti-choice bigots are growing more confident. “I saw a lot of angry, mostly men, on their side. It’s shocking, as I’ve never been on one of these counter-demonstrations before.


UK – Mom documents at-home abortion to destigmatise abortion pills

‘Thank you for posting. I’ve never known how these kind of abortions work,’ viewer says

Kaleigh Werner
Aug 22, 2023

An internet-wide debate has resulted from one brave woman’s choice to detail her at-home abortion experience on TikTok.

On 20 July, a 24-year-old woman named Monica showed her TikTok followers how she completed her abortion, from the comfort of her home, for the first time at nine weeks pregnant. She began by showing the items she needed to prepare her body: the required prescription drug typically used for terminating early pregnancy, motion sickness medicine, a bottle of water, maxi pads, and Planned Parenthood’s timely instructions.


UK – Anti-abortion directory goes offline following our investigation

NHS and councils remove references to ‘Pregnancy Choices Directory’ but campaigners say they should never have been there

Nandini Archer
18 August 2023

A shadowy database directing pregnant people to anti-abortion “crisis pregnancy centres” has been shut down following an openDemocracy investigation.

We revealed earlier this month that the ‘Pregnancy Choices Directory’ website appeared to be a rebranded version of Care Confidential – a charity that wound itself up following a scandal nine years ago. The site included a list of 23 CPCs across Britain. Similar centres have been found to be little more than a front for religious groups trying to talk people out of having abortions, sometimes using misinformation.