Protect women and babies in Northern Ireland

Protect women and babies in Northern Ireland

Despite the global crisis the Westminster government in London has decided to proceed in imposing an extreme abortion regime in Northern Ireland.

Not only has Boris Johnson’s government done this, without referring the decision back to the democratically-elected Assembly of Northern Ireland, but they have in fact gone much further than was legally required, introducing a framework which is amongst the most extreme in the world. 

This is not what the people of Northern Ireland want! Before introducing the new framework, the Northern Ireland office carried out a public consultation in the and 79% of those who took part, said that they did not wish to see any change to Northern Ireland’s abortion laws. 

The most recent  polling on where the people of Northern Ireland stand on abortion was undertaken by the University of Liverpool and Britain’s Economic and Social Research Council, demonstrated thatonly 5% of respondents wanted abortion on demand to 24 weeks, which is what the Conservative government are introducing. 

Opposition to this extreme framework comes from all sides of the political divide in Northern Ireland.58% of Sinn Feinn voters and 54% of DUP voters said that they only wanted abortion to be allowed in those rare cirucmstances when the mother’s life is at risk, which is exactly what the  existing law was, before Westminster imposed  this change. 

These new laws place unborn babies and women at unnecessary risk. 

They include allowing abortion up until birth for children with disabilities, including conditions such as Downs Syndrome, cleft lip and club foot. This brings Northern Ireland’s laws into line with those in the UK where over 90% of babies with Down Syndrome are aborted.

Sex selective abortion is also now specifically permitted until 12 weeks and there is no provision banning it before 24 weeks. Northern Ireland could therefore become an abortion tourist destination for those people from across Europe,  looking to abort their babies because they are the ‘wrong sex’. 

There will be de-facto abortion until 24 weeks, which is out of step with most other European countries, including the neighbouring Republic of Ireland, where the limit is 12 weeks for most cases. 

Abortions of twins, where one is selected to live and one is selected to die, will be legal. 

Other horrors include, babies being born alive after abortion being left to die, legal partial-birth abortions and no pain relief being given to babies while they are aborted.

We must do all we can to prevent these brutalities, sign our petition urging politicians to repeal this law and protect the lives of the unborn.

It is not just the lives of innocent babies which are being put at risk by many of these extreme proposals, vulnerable women and girls will also be affected and potentially rail-roaded into a decision they will come to regret. 

There will be no requirement for doctors to be involved in procedures which increases the risk of  life-threatening complications. 

Young girls aged 15 and over could be taken to abortion centres by school nurses with no requirement for parental consent. There are no legal safeguards on third parties taking children for abortions without their parents’ consent, which could result in an abuser taking their victim for an abortion to cover up their crime. 

With no legal consideration period - Northern Ireland now has fast-track abortion. There have  been many documented cases in other countries of the private abortion providers who will be setting up shop in Northern Ireland, of  subjecting women to high-pressure selling techniques, such as lunchtime abortions. 

The state will have the authority to  force women to have abortions - this happened in the UK in June 2019, before the decision was turned over on appeal. There is nothing in the legislation to limit the state’s power in this respect. 

It is imperative that this extreme framework is not allowed to gain a foothold in Northern Ireland, while the world is distracted by the coronavirus. Please SIGN the petition, demanding the immediate repeal of this barbaric and dangerous legislation.