Nicola Sturgeon announces expanded abortion access a priority for the Scottish Government

Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has announced that the Scottish Government will expand access to abortion in Scotland, despite last year’s figures being the second highest on record.

Speaking in Holyrood on Tuesday 1 September, Sturgeon outlined her party’s intention to expand access to abortion over the next 12 months.

The pledge is also included in the Government’s Programme for 2020-2021, which sets out the actions they will take in the coming year as a “priority action”.

Second-highest abortion figures on record

The SNP Government plan to expand access to abortion comes just one week after the release of official statistics revealed that the number of abortions carried out in Scotland last year reached the second highest number on record.

Official figures from Public Health Scotland show that 13,583 terminations carried out in 2019 – the highest total since 2008 and an increase of 297 from 2018 when there were 13,286 abortions.

SNP MP faces difficulty for pro-life values

One SNP MP, Dr Lisa Cameron, has faced difficulty for holding pro-life values whilst being in the party.  

Ahead of last year’s general election, Dr Cameron revealed fears that her opposition to imposing an extreme abortion regime on Northern Ireland resulted in her being the last party member approved to stand for re-election.

In July 2019, the former doctor voted against an amendment which would force abortion on Northern Ireland.

While the matter was a free vote for individuals to decide in line with their own conscience, Nicola Sturgeon made it clear that she supported abortion.

Dr Camron revealed at the time her office had received more than 900 messages of “abuse” and “cyberbullying” for voting against the amendment.

Since then, Dr Cameron has continued to face a campaign of abuse from abortion activists and recently received a death threat against an elderly relative following her vote against a Bill that would deny women practical and emotional support outside abortion clinics.

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