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Scotland abortion numbers fourth-highest ever on record, as Sturgeon to host abortion campaigners’ summit

Abortion statistics released by Public Health Scotland show that the number of abortions carried out in Scotland in 2021 were the fourth-highest number on record.

The release of the abortion statistics follows the Scottish Government’s announcement that it will be making ‘DIY’ home abortion permanently available without completing an in-depth evaluation of the safety of home abortion schemes – which they were due to report back on in autumn 2022 – and despite only 17% of respondents to a national consultation supporting making ‘DIY’ home abortion permanent. 

Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has also recently committed to chairing a summit, run by abortion campaigners, on making it a criminal offence to offer support to women outside abortion clinics.

Official figures showed there were 13,758 abortions carried out in 2021 – the second-highest total since 2008 and a decrease of 138 from 2020, when there were 13,896 abortions.

5,374 (39%) abortions were repeat abortions in 2021, up from 5,056 (36%) in 2020.

184 disability-selective abortions were performed in 2021.

Spokesperson for Right To Life UK, Catherine Robinson said: “It is a great tragedy that 13,758 lives were lost to abortion in Scotland last year”.

“Every one of these abortions represents a 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”.

“This follows the Scottish Government’s announcing that it will be making ‘DIY’ home abortion permanently available without completing an in-depth evaluation of the safety of home abortion schemes, which they were due to report back on in autumn 2022, and despite only 17% of respondents to a national consultation supporting making ‘DIY’ home abortion permanent”. 

“Thousands of women will be put at risk by the Scottish Government’s decision. It appears that the Scottish Government has announced the decision without completing the safety review, following pressure from abortion campaigners. It’s disgraceful for the Scottish Government to put women at risk to appease abortion campaigners”.

“We are calling on the Scottish Government to urgently bring forward sensible new restrictions and increased support for women with unplanned pregnancies. This would ensure we were working together as a society to reduce the tragic number of abortions that happen each year”.

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Last year, abortion campaigners brought forward an amendment to the UK Government’s flagship Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill that would have introduced abortion on demand, for any reason, up to birth (including sex-selective abortion).

Thanks to the support from people like you, this amendment did not go to a vote and pass, but we expect the abortion lobby to make another attempt to introduce this extreme abortion law change shortly.

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