A teenage activist with Down’s syndrome from Berkshire is campaigning to change the abortion law in the UK after learning that a baby can be aborted up to birth if diagnosed with a disability.
Millie Prelogar, 18, was “shocked” and “offended” when she discovered that, whilst abortion is legal up to the 24th week of pregnancy in most cases, abortion for disability is permitted up to birth in the UK. This includes conditions such as Down’s syndrome, cleft palate or club foot.
She said “Do you think I’d be better off if I had never been born?” and added “Having Down’s Syndrome is no big deal. We can do anything we set our minds to with just a little extra help and support”.
She said this to the new Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, when she met him after his appointment on 24 October.
Abortion law discriminates against people with disabilities, court hears
Earlier this year, the Court of Appeal heard a landmark case against the UK Government over its discriminatory abortion laws after a judge granted permission for the case to be heard.
Heidi Crowter, 27, from Coventry, who herself has Down’s syndrome, challenged the Government over a disability clause in its abortion legislation, together with Máire Lea-Wilson from Brentford, west London, who was placed under pressure to have an abortion when a 34-week scan revealed her son Aidan, now three, had Down’s syndrome.
The outcome of the Court of Appeal hearing is not yet known.
Right To Life UK spokesperson Catherine Robinson said “The discrimination against people with Down’s syndrome and other disabilities is on clear display in our abortion laws. The law unambiguously says that their lives do not matter as much as others. Hopefully, Millie and Heidi’s work will highlight this glaring injustice and help change the law”.