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Press Release: Parliament must reject further attempt to liberalise abortion law says Alive and Kicking.

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Issued on behalf of Alive and Kicking

Press Release

For Immediate Release

19/06/08

Parliament must reject further attempt to liberalise abortion law says Alive and Kicking.

As abortion figures in England and Wales hit a record high today the Alive and Kicking Alliance called on Parliament to reject an attempt to liberalise the abortion law even further and instead to embrace measures to bring down the spiraling rates that have made Britain the abortion capital of Europe.

Spokesman Ms Julia Millington said, ‘It is astounding, that with abortion now running at nearly 200,000 a year in England and Wales for the first time ever, a group of MPs is seeking to use the Report stage of the HFE Bill to liberalise the law even further by scrapping the requirement for two doctors’ signatures, allowing nurses and midwives to carry about abortions and pushing to bring abortion into GP surgeries, polyclinics and cottage hospitals.’

‘This new move flies in the face of public opinion which has turned dramatically in recent years. 80% of people who express an opinion now believe that ways should be found of reducing the 200,000 abortions performed each year in Britain. Two out of three people, including three out of four women, and two out of three doctors have signalled their support for a lowering of the 24 week upper limit.’


‘With reports of some women now having up to eight abortions is very clear that many are using abortion simply as a form of contraception – and that the government’s tired formula of condoms, coils and abortion is doing nothing to stem the tide. Rather than making abortion even more widely available by allowing nurse-led medical abortion in polyclinics and GP surgeries, Parliament should be looking for legislative and social change which brings abortion rates down.’

‘With 97% of abortions being performed on grounds of risk to a mother’s mental and physical health, and 99.5% of these on mental health grounds alone there is clearly widespread flouting of the law by doctors. The Royal College of Psychiatrists, in a statement issued on 14 March 2008, has said that there is no clear evidence that psychiatric indications for abortion even exist, whilst admitting that some studies indicate that having an abortion actually poses a serious risk to a woman’s mental health.’

Abortions are clearly being carried out, not for health reasons as prescribed by the law, but purely on grounds of unwanted pregnancy, failed contraception, social inconvenience or economic difficulty masquerading as risk to the mother’s mental health. At very least Parliament should be ensuring that the existing law, which is intended to provide some protection for the unborn child, is properly upheld and obeyed.

‘The Alliance will continue to work towards making abortion rare. We seek an a substantial reduction in the 24 week upper limit, an end to discriminatory abortion for disabled babies, and would like  to introduce a charter of consent, so that women with unplanned pregnancies have the time, space, information and support necessary to make a fully informed choice. Many women feel they have not choice but abortion, or end their pregnancies because of covert or overt pressure from partners, friends or family members.’


‘We have published data on where individual MPs stand on this issue and will continue to monitor voting patterns carefully. There are many marginal seats nationally, across the political divide, and we will ensure the votes of our million supporters count positively in forthcoming elections.’


Further information for Editors:


Alive and Kicking is seeking a substantial reduction of the 24-week upper limit for the abortion of healthy babies; an end to the discriminatory provision allowing abortion of disabled babies up to birth; and an informed consent law requiring doctors to provide comprehensive evidence-based information on the risks associated with abortion and the availability of positives alternatives for those needing help.


Alive and Kicking Alliance includes CARE, CCFON, Christian Medical Fellowship, CORE, Evangelical Alliance, Guild of Catholic Doctors, Lawyers' Christian Fellowship, LIFE, Maranatha, Prolife Alliance, Real Choice, Student Life Net.


From: Paul Eddy

Paul Eddy Public Relations Ltd

38 Farm Road, Nottingham NG9 5BZ

T: 07958 905716

E: paul@pauleddy.org

W. www.pauleddy.org

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