Why UK campaigners fear drive to decriminalise abortion may stall

Carla Foster’s release welcomed but case has done little to settle debate about abortions carried after 24-week limit

Alexandra Topping
Tue 18 Jul 2023

On Tuesday, Carla Foster, who was jailed for terminating her pregnancy after the legal time limit last month, was told by the court of appeal that she would be released from prison after her 28-month sentence was halved and suspended.

The British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) says there are three more women accused of illegally ending their own pregnancies awaiting trial, adding that in the last three years there has been an increase in the number of women and girls facing police investigations and threatened with up to life imprisonment.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/jul/18/why-uk-campaigners-fear-drive-to-decriminalisation-abortion-may-stalln

New toolkit released to tackle stigma experienced by abortion care providers

14 Jun 2023

Today the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists’ (RCOG) Making Abortion Safe programme (MAS) has released a new toolkit. The toolkit summarises the evidence base and identifies current practices and resources that could help reduce and manage the stigma which recent research undertaken by the MAS programme (RCOG 2021, unpublished) indicates is experienced globally by those working in abortion care.

The Making Abortion Safe programme is a multi-country advocacy programme, led by the RCOG, and delivered in partnership with healthcare professionals in Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Sierra Leone and Sudan, which aims to improve women and girls’ access to quality and safe abortion, post abortion care and/or post abortion contraception, by addressing the barriers they face in these countries and beyond. A core component of this work has been to research the stigma experienced by healthcare professionals working in abortion care and to increase awareness of the need for, and ways in which organisations can tackle this issue.

Continued: https://www.rcog.org.uk/news/new-toolkit-released-to-tackle-stigma-experienced-by-abortion-care-providers-1/

Calls for abortion to be decriminalised amid row over jailing of UK woman

Leading expert warns of ‘sustained attacks’ on reproductive rights after sentence imposed on Monday

Alexandra Topping and Tobi Thomas
Tue 13 Jun 2023

Leading women’s health experts have warned of an attack on women’s reproductive rights and the potential for more prosecutions, following the jailing of a woman for terminating her pregnancy after the legal time limit.

The president of the UK’s leading body for sexual health professionals said that women should be “more worried than they are” following the sentencing, adding that it could lead to sustained attacks on established rights, and efforts to curtail reforms.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/jun/13/calls-for-abortion-to-be-decriminalised-amid-row-over-jailing-of-uk-woman

A Controversial Court Ruling Has Britain’s Abortion Rights Groups Up in Arms

JUNE 13, 2023

U.K. abortion rights groups are planning large demonstrations on Saturday outside London’s Royal Courts of Justice, after a woman was controversially jailed on Monday under an 1861 law for using drugs to induce a medical abortion past legal term limits.

The case has sparked outcry and calls for an overhaul of reproductive justice laws in the U.K., as well as the full decriminalization of abortion.

Continued: https://time.com/6286943/abortion-uk-law-jailed-woman/

Outrage at jail sentence for woman who took abortion pills later than UK limit

Mitigation plea signed by medical groups was sent to judge, while BPAS chief executive said sentence was ‘shocking and appalling’

Tobi Thomas
Mon 12 Jun 2023

Campaigners and MPs have reacted with outrage to a woman being sentenced to more than two years in prison for procuring drugs to induce an abortion after the legal limit.

The mother of three received the medication under the “pills by post” scheme, which was introduced during the Covid pandemic for unwanted pregnancies up to 10 weeks, after a remote consultation.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/jun/12/woman-in-uk-jailed-for-28-months-over-taking-abortion-pills-after-legal-time-limit

UK facing crisis point in abortion provision, experts say

Women said to be travelling hundreds of miles for appointments or waiting several weeks

Lucy Hough and Hannah Moore
Thu 26 Jan 2023

The UK is facing a “crisis point” in abortion provision, experts say, with rising demand and restricted access to care in many areas putting unprecedented pressure on struggling NHS services.

Healthcare professionals described a “terrifying” state of affairs in which women are travelling hundreds of miles for appointments or waiting several weeks before they are seen.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2023/jan/26/uk-facing-crisis-point-in-abortion-provision-experts-say

How the US scrapping of Roe v Wade threatens the global medical abortion revolution

Medical abortions are a global success story, and not one that will be easily derailed by the legislative backsliding in the US. Time, now, to close the access gaps, report Sally Howard and Geetanjali Krishna

BMJ 2022; 379
doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.o2349 (Published 19 October 2022)

Sally Howard, Geetanjali Krishna

In 2021, a 20 year old woman in Hyderabad, India, discovered she was pregnant.
A well educated, city girl, she was nevertheless afraid of the stigma attached
to unmarried pregnancy and did not know if she could legally terminate the
pregnancy. Around the same time, another young couple living together in
Bengaluru were in a similar predicament.

“Both women were not ready for a child but completely clueless about the
options they had, and the gestation period up to which abortion is legally
allowed in India,” says Anusha Pilli, a doctor who practises privately in
Hyderabad. Pilli helped both women to get medical abortions before their first
trimesters ended.

Continued: https://www.bmj.com/content/379/bmj.o2349

Think abortion is legal in Great Britain? Ask the two women currently facing life sentences

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

Charlotte Proudman
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.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/aug/19/abortion-legal-great-britain-women-life-sentences-roe-v-wade

US Donors Are Helping Push Anti-Abortion Agendas in British Schools

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.

Continued: https://www.vice.com/en/article/93be83/anti-abortion-schools-uk

UK – Renewed calls for abortion clinic buffer zones to protect women from abuse

29th May
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.

Continued: https://www.largsandmillportnews.com/news/20174360.renewed-calls-abortion-clinic-buffer-zones-protect-women-abuse/