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Lord Alton of Liverpool Responds to Irish Referendum Travesty on RTL Clitheroe Sponsored Walk of Witness

Speaking in Clitheroe, at the Bank Holiday Monday Right To Life Clitheroe Sponsored Walk of Witness, David (Lord) Alton reminded walkers that Mother Teresa of Calcutta had said that in the struggle to safeguard the sanctity of human life that, “we are not called upon to be successful, but faithful”.

Reflecting on the Irish referendum, Lord Alton said that the sponsored walk through Lancashire’s Ribble Valley, to raise funds for Right To Life, was “a chance to both witness and to express solidarity with the three quarters of a million Irish people who had voted against removing protection for the unborn child from the Irish constitution”. He noted, “they campaigned under the slogans that ‘both lives matter’ and that we must always ‘love both’ – mother and child – this should remain the clarion call of the right-to-life movement”.

Lord Alton went on to say that, “No one ever said this would be an easy fight paved with victories. But every life saved, every mind changed, is how we must measure success”.

Lord Alton, whose late mother was a native Irish speaker, has along with his children Irish as well as British Citizenship; and he reflected that anyone who loved Ireland and its people would inevitably “feel dispirited and distressed by this outcome”.

He added that “Every abortion is a tragedy. With one abortion in England every three minutes, Ireland will come to regret following the British law – a law that  allows abortion up to and even during birth in the case of disability – leading to the death of 90% of babies with Down’s syndrome detected in the womb”.

He said: “It was bordering on the obscene to watch people celebrating an event that will lead to the ending of innocent life. Ireland will become like Ramah where Rachel was found weeping and mourning the children that are no more”.

The spectacle of crowds gathering in castle Yard in Dublin, where mobs once gathered to cheer the public  execution of prisoners, was distasteful in the extreme.  And now they will seek to do the same in Northern Ireland.

“It is beyond belief that ‘liberals’, who say they believe in devolution, quickly abandon their belief in local democracy when it comes to abortion. They gather in the restaurants of Richmond-upon-Thames or the Islington wine bars and plot to impose their political ideology and agenda on the people of Northern Ireland – where 100,000 people are alive today, 5% of the population, precisely because Northern Ireland refused to introduce British abortion laws. This is a matter to be settled in the North by the North and not by Westminster.

Lord Alton said that, “Time and again, those in favour of abortion, embryo experimentation, coercive overseas abortions, and euthanasia have relentlessly campaigned to change laws that since Hippocrates crafted the Hippocratic Oath – with explicit condemnation of abortion and euthanasia – have served society well. There is no such thing as a safe abortion for the baby in the womb”.

Quoting G.K. Chesterton, he said that “when we marry the spirit of the age we become widowers in the next” and added that when we kill the unborn we will be childless in the next.

Lord Alton concluded, “In Britain and now Ireland this is the most dangerous time in history to be an unborn child. For now we weep and stand with Rachel but, as the baton passes to the next generation, we will redouble our efforts until we change hearts, minds, attitudes, culture… and laws”.

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:

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