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Challenge PM over backdoor liberalisation of abortion



We're asking you to contact the Prime Minister, the Health Secretary and your own MP in light of disturbing revelations that abortion regulations have been secretly liberalised under the Coalition government.

'Interim Procedures' quietly issued to private abortion providers in 2012 indicated that it was no longer a legal requirement that a mother considering abortion actually see a doctor. This is a very serious change. It opens the door for doctors to 'approve' an abortion without ever seeing the woman requesting it and paves the way for nurse-led abortions.

This is a very significant line to cross. If it remains unchallenged, the seriousness of abortion in the eyes of the medical profession and the value of human life in the eyes of society will be further diminished. For the sake of women, unborn children, health-care professionals and God's truth about the human person, please take action to ensure that this change is reversed in the forthcoming revised procedures:

Please contact the Prime Minister asking how a Conservative-led government could have presided over such a change and urging him to ensure that it is reversed in the soon to be published final procedures. Contact: Rt Hon David Cameron MP, 10 Downing Street, London SW1A 2AA

  • Please contact the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt asking him to ensure that this change is reversed in the final procedures. Contact: Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP, Department of Health, Richmond House, 79 Whitehall, London SW1A 2NS / 
  • Please contact your MP asking them to investigate potentially misleading information provided to Parliament and the introduction of the procedures without public or parliamentary notification; urge your MP to press for the change to be reversed in the soon to be published final procedures. Find contact details for your MP here

You may want to point out that a recent opinion poll found that 92% of women agreed that 'a woman requesting an abortion should always be seen in person by a qualified doctor.' See this article for more information.

Further Background 

For further explanation, please see this commentary by Dr Peter Saunders. 

  • The change stands in sharp contrast to previous procedures issued under the Labour government in 1999 that spoke of medical practitioners giving 'their opinions on the reasons under the [Abortion Act] for the termination following consultation with the woman."
  • It also stands in contrast to a Parliamentary statement given by the Public Health Minister at around the same time as the change: 'There is no requirement that both doctors must see and examine the woman."
  • The changed regulations directly affects private abortion providers who in 2012 carried out over 120,000 abortions in England and Wales, the vast majority of them paid for by the NHS.
  • It has come to light that conversations were held between Department of Health officials and private providers before the changes were made.
  • The revised procedures were issued in Summer 2012 in the last weeks of Conservative MP Andrew Lansley's tenure as Health Secretary.
  • The regulations  were issued without any public notification or parliamentary debate.
  • They were posted on the Department's website in January 2013 again without any notification.
  • The first public mention of their existence was in March 2013.


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