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Press release – 56th anniversary of Abortion Act receiving Royal Assent, 10,256,050 lives lost since 1967

Baby - 56th anniversary of the Abortion Act

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

56 years of abortion: 10,256,050 lives lost since 1967

Today marks the 56th anniversary of the Abortion Act receiving royal assent.

Since then, a staggering 10,256,050* unborn babies have lost their lives to abortion across England, Wales, and Scotland — more than one baby is lost to abortion every two and a half minutes; 26 lives are ended every hour**.

123,219 abortions for residents of England and Wales took place in the six months between 1 January and 30 June 2022.

This is 17,731 higher than the figure for the first six months of 2021, which was 105,488 for residents of England and Wales. 2021 saw the highest number of abortions ever recorded in England and Wales over a full year, at 214,256 for residents of England and Wales.

This significant rise in abortions has come as abortion campaigners, led by abortion provider BPAS, cynically use the tragic case of the death of Baby Lily, at between 32 and 34 weeks gestation, to campaign for the full ‘decriminalisation’ of abortion. This would make abortion up to birth legal for any reason in England and Wales.

Right To Life UK is calling for 

  • the reinstatement of in-person appointments before all abortions take place to ensure that the gestation of babies can accurately be assessed.
  • a full inquiry into the abortion provider, the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, for sending out abortion pills to a woman whose baby, Lily, was at least 32 weeks gestation, which is 22 weeks beyond the legal limit for at-home abortions.
  • the Government to firmly reject changing legislation to make abortion legal right up to birth.

Opinion polls repeatedly show that the public want increased protections for unborn babies and more support for mothers facing unplanned pregnancies rather than the wholesale removal of legal safeguards around abortion.

Only 1% of the population want abortion to be available up to birth and 70% of women want the abortion limit to be reduced to 20 weeks or lower.

A spokesperson for Right To Life UK, Catherine Robinson, said:

“The UK’s abortion law is failing both women and unborn babies. It is a national tragedy that 10,256,050 lives have been lost since the 1967 Abortion Act came into effect, each one a unique and valuable human being who was denied the right to life”.

“Every one of these abortions represents a collective failure of our society to protect the lives of babies in the womb and a failure to offer full support to women with unplanned pregnancies”.

“While we may pause to commemorate this tragedy, this day also serves as a call to action for people around the country to renew their efforts to do everything they can to help ensure more lives are saved from abortion in the future”. 

“This includes contacting MPs and asking them to ensure that protections for unborn babies are introduced and safeguards are strengthened to protect both mothers and babies – along with volunteering with pregnancy support centres and undertaking other pro-life activities that support mothers and their children in pregnancy and beyond”.

“By being proactive and taking action, every single one of us can be part of building a pro-life nation where we protect and defend the right to life of every human being from conception to natural death”. 

ENDS

  • For additional quotes and media interviews contact press@righttolife.org.uk or 07774 483 658.
  • For further information on Right To Life UK visit www.righttolife.org.uk
  • ComRes interviewed 2,008 GB adults online between 12 and 14 May 2017. Data were weighted by age, gender, region and socio-economic grade to be demographically representative of all GB adults. Full data tables are available here

*This figure is a projection for England, Wales and Scotland through to midnight on 27/10/23 and has been calculated based on the following assumptions:

  • The number of abortions per day in England & Wales will remain the same in 2023 and 2022 as in 2021.
  • The number of abortions per day in Scotland will remain the same in 2023 as in 2022.
  • The rate of abortions throughout the year is evenly distributed.

Please note, we have not included data for abortions that have occurred in Northern Ireland since 2020 because it has not been made clear on which day abortions began being performed in Northern Ireland. It is therefore unreliable to model a projection for the remainder of that year.

** This figure has been calculated using the abortion statistics released by the Department for Health and Social Care for the year 1 January 2021 – 31 December 2021. These are the latest statistics released that provide data for a full year.

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Ask your local representatives to take the Both Lives Pledge