Press release – Dangerous DIY abortions introduced by Government without Parliamentary debate or scrutiny, group calls to revoke decision immediately

PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Dangerous DIY abortions introduced by Government without Parliamentary debate or scrutiny, group calls to revoke decision immediately

The Government have announced the biggest change to abortion provision since 1967, introducing telemedicine abortions where ‘DIY’ abortions will be performed at home by women on themselves without a doctor or other medical professional present.

The very substantial change was announced this afternoon on Twitter without any public consultation, parliamentary scrutiny or debate.  

Previously abortions could only take place in hospitals or abortion clinics approved by the Secretary of State. Under the new temporary policy, doctors will be able to prescribe abortion pills (mifepristone and misoprostol) over the phone or video (eg Facetime or Skype) and then women will perform their own abortion at home, by taking both abortion pills, meaning they will be left to pass their unborn child at home without direct medical supervision.

Spokesperson for Right to Life UK, Catherine Robinson said:

We are calling on the Government to immediately revoke this dangerous decision to allow DIY abortions.

This is incredibly opportunistic and tragic change pushed by the abortion lobby to take advantage of this crisis. This is the most significant policy change to the practice of Abortion since 1967 and it has happened entirely by the back-door – without any Parliamentary scrutiny or public consultation. For a Government who won the recent election on the premise of giving Parliament “back control”, undermining of Parliament’s role in our democracy can only be described as an attack on Parliamentary sovereignty: a key component of our democratic system 

This places women at risk. The removal of any direct medical supervision overseeing the use of both abortion pills could see a rise of complications experienced by women, thus putting more strain on our NHS – having the opposite of the effect intended.

Although the Government have indicated that the designated location for the abortion will be the home, there is nothing to stop both abortion pills being taken at other locations such as schools. It is not clear how the NHS or independent clinic could ensure the pills are taken at home, and with another adult present. Indeed, there would be no control over when, where or even who is taking the pills.

There are also possible safety issues with under-16 girls and other vulnerable women taking abortion pills at home, school or other locations without the support of medical staff and possibly under coercion from third-parties.

Furthermore, this proposal poses a threat to vulnerable girls who are at risk from sex-trafficking or child-sex abuse, as the ‘home’ abortion could be used by their abusers as a means to more easily cover up trafficking or abuse scandals.

Today’s policy change by the Government goes against the very argument previously made by the abortion industry who argued that abortions should be provided at approved locations to protect women from abuse and coercion. By encouraging women to have abortions at home or other locations, the UK Government have put the health and safety of women at risk. 

The UK Government must immediately repeal these changes to allow proper democratic procedures to be undertaken, but more importantly, to protect the health of thousands of women across the country.”

ENDS

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