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BMA calls for imposition of abortion on Northern Ireland

The British Medical Association (BMA) has pass a motion to remove almost all legal safeguards surrounding abortion and has called for the extension of abortion to Northern Ireland.

In a vote at the BMA’s Annual Representative Meeting (ARM) in Belfast, medical professionals voted to repeal sections 58 and 59 of the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act, as well as extend the provision of abortion to Northern Ireland.

This vote was essentially a restatement of the BMA ARM in 2017 which also voted to remove all legal safeguards in abortion legislation.

There are strong pro-life protections in Northern Ireland where abortion remains a devolved issue. This means that the 1967 Abortion Act does not apply and there are 100,000 people alive today because of this.

Speeches opposed to the motion to extend abortion provision to Northern Ireland focused on the need to respect the fact that abortion remains a devolved issue – the decision as to the abortion law in Northern Ireland remains a decision for the Parliamentary Assembly there, and it is not the prerogative of Westminster or other lobby groups to force such legislation on the region.

The most recent vote on this in 2016, showed that a clear majority of the Northern Ireland Assembly, upheld the law on abortion as it currently stands and the majority of women in Northern Ireland remain opposed to anyone other than the people of Northern Ireland and their elected representatives.

Clare McCarthy from Right To Life UK said:

Although the passing of this motion by the BMA to remove legal safeguards in the abortion law and to extend abortion provision to Northern Ireland is disappointing, it is essentially a reiteration of votes from previous years.”

“The majority of women in Northern Ireland have made clear that they do not want outside intervention to force abortion on Northern Ireland and expect it to remain a decision for the people their. We hope that the BMA will respect devolution in the future.”

Help stop abortion up to birth for babies with disabilities including Down's syndrome & club foot

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Dear reader

In 2020, the UK Government imposed an extreme abortion regime on Northern Ireland, which included a provision that legalised abortion right up to birth for disabilties including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot.

A new Bill has been launched at the Northern Ireland assembly that will remove the current provision that allows abortion for ‘severe fetal impairment’.

It is under these grounds in the regulations that babies with disabilities including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot can currently be singled out for abortion in Northern Ireland because of their disability and can be aborted right up to birth.

Before the new abortion regime was imposed on Northern Ireland in 2020, disability-selective abortion for conditions such as Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot was not legal and there was a culture of welcoming and supporting people with these disabilities rather than eliminating them.

This is reflected directly in the latest figures (2016) from the Department of Health in Northern Ireland, which show that while there were 52 children born with Down’s syndrome in Northern Ireland, in the same year only 1 child from Northern Ireland with Down’s syndrome was aborted in England and Wales. 

This contrasts with the situation in the rest of the United Kingdom where disability-selective abortion has been legal since 1967.

The latest available figures show that 90% of children diagnosed with Down’s syndrome before birth are aborted in England and Wales.

We are, therefore, asking people like you to take 30 seconds of your time and add your support to the campaign to stop abortion up to birth for disabilities including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot in Northern Ireland.

If you live in Northern Ireland: 
Ask your MLAs to vote to stop abortion up to birth for disabilities including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot:

If you live outside Northern Ireland: 
Show your support by signing this petition in support of the Bill:

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Help stop abortion up to birth for babies with disabilities including Down's syndrome & club foot

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