The overturning of Roe v Wade is horrific, but vulnerable women are being imprisoned for ending pregnancies right now in Britain. It’s time to legalise abortion
Fri 19 Aug 2022
Like many people in Britain, you probably watched with horror the US supreme court’s reversal of Roe v Wade, thinking, “Thank goodness women could never be prosecuted for having an abortion here.” But let me tell you, it already happens here.
Two women are currently awaiting criminal trial in England for abortion-related offences, both facing charges that carry a maximum sentence of life. At least 17 women have been investigated by police over the past eight years for having had abortions.
A British anti-abortion group that gives talks in schools has received over £72,000 from the US over the last 2 years, VICE World News can reveal.
By Sophia Smith Galer
May 30, 2022
An anti-abortion group in the UK that gives talks to schoolchildren and medical professionals about what it terms “coerced abortion” is receiving tens of thousands of dollars from anonymous US-based backers, VICE World News can reveal.
Nearly £73,000 ($91,885, €85,330) has been donated anonymously via a donor agency called NPT Transatlantic in the past two years to the Society for the Protection of the Unborn Child’s (SPUC) registered charity, one of the UK’s most active anti-abortion groups. The agency allows US and UK taxpayers to donate to organisations across the Atlantic without revealing their name and without qualifying for any tax deduction.
By PA News Agency
Medical leaders have made a renewed call for legislation to protect women from “unacceptable” harassment and intimidation outside abortion clinics.
The Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH), which represents more than 14,000 UK doctors, has issued a new position statement calling for a nationwide network of buffer zones around abortion clinics.
Government will be forced to abandon its plan to end a two-year trial of the scheme in August
Denis Campbell Health policy editor
Wed 30 Mar 2022
Women in England will be able to access a “pills by post” abortion service indefinitely after MPs voted today to compel ministers to make it permanent instead of scrapping the scheme in September.
The decision will benefit tens of thousands of women every year who want to take the two tablets needed to end a pregnancy in the privacy of their own home rather than having to take the first at a clinic or hospital. They have to be taken within the first 10 weeks of pregnancy.
Scotland and Wales set to make the postal service permanent, while ministers in England end the trial
Denis Campbell Health policy editor
Tue 29 Mar 2022
Women in England will only be able to access abortion tablets online illegally because ministers are ending the “pills by post” trial, MPs have been told before a crucial Commons vote on the scheme.
Medical groups, pro-choice campaigners and women’s organisations say the government’s decision to end the two-year experiment will lead to those seeking a termination breaking the law and risking criminal charges.
Change in law during Covid pandemic has allowed women to take pills without visiting clinic or hospital
Denis Campbell Health policy editor
Thu 24 Feb 2022
Women in England will be able to access abortion pills more easily for the next six months, but the temporary “pills by post” scheme brought in because of Covid will then be scrapped in September.
Maggie Throup, the public health minister, confirmed on Thursday that women seeking to terminate a pregnancy by taking the two pills involved at home would lose that right at the end of August.
Doctors say a return to pre-Covid rules, where women had to get a clinic appointment, will leave thousands waiting too long
Thu 10 Feb 2022
How long ago the Abortion Act of 1967 seems now, and yet the struggle for a woman’s right to control her own body never ends. Time and again this basic principle comes under attack from rightwing and religious lobbies forever seeking to limit and reverse it.
Now they are at it yet again. As the prime minister dashes to roll back all coronavirus legislation a month early to mollify his rebels, the health secretary, Sajid Javid, and his junior minister, Maggie Throup, will decide whether to maintain the abortion laws that were introduced as part of emergency Covid laws, allowing women to request earlier and easier terminations at home. If Javid and Throup instead return to the old abortion laws that were in place before Covid, where women had to have an in-person clinic visit in order to get an abortion, thousands of women will have to chase scarce clinical appointments, forcing many to wait beyond the time limit for medical abortions.
‘There is no reason for governments to delay making telemedicine for early medical abortion a permanent feature of healthcare,’ doctors say
Jan 31, 2022
Women will be forced into illegal abortions if the government does not extend rules that allow abortion pills to be taken at home, doctors have warned.
Healthcare providers from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) and the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) are concerned about plans to scrap the rules that were put in place during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Monday November 22 2021
A senior member of the Scottish Catholic church sits on the board of an anti-abortion charity, whose Belfast branch once peddled falsehoods about terminations leading to breast cancer, it can be revealed.
Stanton Healthcare, a group based in the US, is set to open a second UK branch, in Scotland, with the backing of the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh, which has promised to support its “much-needed work”.
Mara Malagodi, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Faculty of Law
November 10, 2021
Recent legal changes in a number of jurisdictions that have entirely decriminalised abortion are steeped in the language of gender constitutionalism and human rights – whether these changes have taken place via constitutional litigation or statutory reform. As a result, the campaigns for complete decriminalisation in other jurisdictions have now begun to engage in a pragmatic comparative law exercise to advance their cause. Activists deploy the legal arguments and strategies marshalled in those jurisdictions that have completely removed abortion from the purview of their criminal laws alongside domestic constitutional principles and international human rights standards. As such, we are witnessing a global cross-pollination of legal ideas anchored in substantive notions of gender equality and human dignity to challenge legal restrictions to women’s bodily autonomy.
Abortion is the only medical procedure that continues to be consistently treated as a crime around the world. Even those jurisdictions that have partially liberalised their legal regimes continue to criminalise abortion outside of the terms explicitly provided by law. Only a handful of jurisdictions such as China (1979 – excluding Hong Kong and Macau), Canada (1988), Northern Ireland (2019), New Zealand (2020), and Australia (2021), have entirely removed abortion from the purview of their penal laws. Canada did so via constitutional litigation, while the other jurisdictions via statutory reform.