N. Ireland – Abortion: Full NI service to be set up after delays

Dec 2, 2022
By Jayne McCormack, BBC News NI political correspondent

A permanent abortion service is now being commissioned in Northern Ireland, the government has announced.

The move comes three years after MPs voted to change Northern Ireland's abortion laws while devolution was suspended. Setting up full services has been held up due to political deadlock.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-63833719


Funding and politics hit N.Ireland abortion services

by Akshata KAPOOR, AFP
July 4, 2022

Campaigners in Northern Ireland are closely watching US moves to restrict abortion, particularly concerns that women will now have to travel across states for terminations.

Abortion was only decriminalised in the British province in 2019 — 42 years after terminations were made legal up to 24 weeks in most circumstances in the rest of the UK.

Continued: https://www.macaubusiness.com/funding-and-politics-hit-n-ireland-abortion-services/


Women in Northern Ireland Still Struggle to Access Abortion More Than 2 Years After Decriminalization

BY KRISTEN CHICK/BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND
JUNE 30, 2022

When Katie Boyd decided to have an abortion in November, she thought the process would be smooth. She had celebrated when abortion was decriminalized in Northern Ireland two years earlier, in October 2019, and two years on, it seemed logical that abortion care would now be readily available.

Boyd, 40, called a hotline intended to connect those seeking abortion with care, and was told she’d receive a call within five days from a clinic that could provide an early medication abortion. But five days went by with no call. Her follow-up calls begging for direct contact information for the clinic got her nowhere. As the days turned into weeks, Boyd began to panic.

Continued: https://time.com/6192022/northern-ireland-abortion-access/


It isn’t just the US: abortion barriers in Britain are forcing women to travel miles for treatment

In Scotland and Northern Ireland, access to second-trimester abortions still depends on a damaging postcode lottery

Rachel Connolly
Wed 22 Jun 2022

When a draft supreme court decision was leaked in May showing that judges intended to overturn Roe v Wade, many in the UK reacted with outrage. Rightly so: such a law change would leave abortion rules up to individual states. Rights groups estimate that abortion could become illegal in about half the states if this is successful. Americans would be forced to travel to states where it was still legal, or order costly abortion medicine online, risking severe legal consequences by doing so. Overturning Roe v Wade would probably also inspire anti-choice campaign groups to pursue legal action elsewhere in the world.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/jun/22/abortion-hierarchy-uk-lack-of-services-scotland-northern-ireland-england-terminate-pregnancy


Northern Ireland Office may directly instruct trusts to offer abortion services

Exclusive: Brandon Lewis warns he will soon have ‘no alternative but to take further steps’ to ensure services are provided

Jessica Elgot Chief political correspondent
Wed 27 Oct 2021

Brandon Lewis could override the Northern Ireland executive and directly instruct the nation’s health trusts to provide abortion services, warning leaders in a leaked letter that the continued delay is unacceptable conduct in public office.

The Northern Ireland secretary wrote to the first minister, Paul Givan, and his deputy, Michelle O’Neill, warning he would soon “have no alternative but to take further steps to ensure that women and girls have access to abortion services as decided by parliament, and to which they have a right”.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2021/oct/27/northern-ireland-office-may-directly-instruct-trusts-to-offer-abortion-services


N. Ireland – Abortion: Stormont has ‘no duty’ to follow Westminster order

By Jayne McCormack, BBC News NI political correspondent
Oct 4, 2021

Stormont departments have "no duty" to follow a government direction to set up abortion services in NI, the High Court in Belfast has heard.

The remarks were made by John Larkin QC during the start of a second legal challenge over abortion laws.

In July, political disagreement in the executive led the government to impose a deadline to establish services by next March.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-58765851


Abortion protests take place in Belfast amid deepening political row

Pro-choice councillor says any move to block rollout of services is ‘against democracy’

July 31, 2021

Pro-choice and anti-abortion campaigners have held separate protests in Belfast amid the deepening political row over the commissioning of abortion services in Northern Ireland.

The small-scale demonstrations in the city centre came after DUP First Minister Paul Givan threatened to block the British government’s move to formally direct Stormont to fully roll out abortion services in the region.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/abortion-protests-take-place-in-belfast-amid-deepening-political-row-1.4636154


Northern Ireland’s new First Minister vows to block rollout of abortion services

Sam Courtney-Guy
Friday 30 Jul 2021

Northern Ireland’s recently-appointed First Minister has vowed to resist the introduction of abortion services in the six counties.

Laws making abortion a criminal offence in Northern Ireland were abolished in 2019 as a result of a bill passed by MPs in Westminster.

Continued: https://metro.co.uk/2021/07/30/northern-ireland-abortion-paul-givan-vows-to-stop-rollout-of-services-15012513/


Britain orders Northern Ireland to introduce full abortion services

‘This stalemate leaves me no choice,’ UK Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis tells Belfast leaders.

by SHAWN POGATCHNIK
July 22, 2021

The British government has ordered Northern Ireland’s coalition government to introduce full-fledged abortion services, more than a year after legislation passed in Westminster required this to happen.

Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis issued the order Thursday directing the U.K. region’s Department of Health and Health Minister Robin Swann to make Northern Ireland compliant with British abortion law.

Continued: https://www.politico.eu/article/britain-orders-northern-ireland-to-introduce-full-abortion-services/


Abortion in NI: Westminster directs Stormont to set up services

By Jayne McCormack, BBC News NI political correspondent
July 22, 2021

Westminster has directed Stormont's Department of Health to set up full abortion services in Northern Ireland by no later than next March.

The government has intervened with a formal direction requiring Stormont to act.

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-57921537