Abortion Rights Blog

The national pro-choice campaign

April 2014 Newsletter

46 years of the 1967 Act, Edinburgh

Join Abortion Rights Edinburgh to celebrate 46 years since the Abortion Act came into effect. On Saturday April 26th (TOMORROW!) from 11am til 1pm Abortion Rights Edinburgh will be at the Bell Tower on Lothian Road demonstrating our ongoing support for defending and extending access to abortion. Click attending on the Facebook event.


Calling UK Journalists!

We’re updating our database on pro-choice journalists in the UK; we want to ensure that journalists know where to come for factual information, and so we can work to get more accurate, pro-choice stories in the news. We’re particularly keen to strengthen our contacts with local journalists. If you are, work with, or otherwise know, a pro-choice journalist please send details to the office and/or pass this email on.


Summary: Abortion Rights public meeting and AGM 

We thank everyone who came to the public meeting on 29th March, all the fantastic speakers, and our members who joined for the AGM (and missed those who were unable to make it!). The new Executive Committee will meet for the first time on April 26th; we will keep you updated! 


Summary: pro-choice Ealing (West London) action

On Saturday, 5 April, Pro Choice Ealing held a rally on Ealing Green to express their opposition to the prayer vigils that have been held outside the local Marie Stopes clinic, which have been intimidating the clinic’s patients, staff and the wider community for more than a month. The campaign was well received by the people of Ealing who expressed their anger at the harassment that has become commonplace for people who have to live and work near the clinic, as well as those who choose to use its services. One local resident spoke for many when she said “the 40 Days For Life protesters have become a permanent and unwelcome intrusion into our close-knit, diverse and tolerant community”. 


The rally was also joined by the Labour candidate for Ealing Central and Acton, Dr Rupa Huq, who expressed her support, saying “These protestors may be vocal and visible but in fact it’s people of a pro-choice persuasion who make up the silent majority in Ealing and I’m proud to be part of this peaceful protest to counter the action of the so-called “40 Days for Life” group”.


If local people are intimidated by the actions of 40 Days for Life they are urged to contact the Ealing Safer Communities Team on 020 8825 5994. 

(The above is an abridged version of Pro Choice Ealing’s press release. We thank them for sharing this with us and for organising a positive protest.)


Unison Conference

We were happy to be invited as a stall-holder to Unison’s Health Conference in Brighton last week; we really enjoyed talking to attendees and dolling our merchandise (we’re now out of pens and totes!), and are happy to report positive feedback from the Unison health sector. Remember, if your work is holding a conferences we’re always keen to come along (as speaker, listeners, stall holders and more!).


Safe abortion is a right: Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women

The 57th session of the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women has made a statement on the status of sexual and reproductive health. Abortion Rights is particularly pleased that the Committee has noted that “the provision of, inter alia, safe abortion and post abortion care…as well as access to accurate and comprehensive information about sexuality and reproduction, are all part of the right to sexual and reproductive health” and that “every State can and should do more to ensure the full respect, protection and fulfillment of sexual and reproductive rights, in line with human rights obligations.”  Read more.


What did you learn at school about abortion?

Education for Choice’s youth volunteer team have made an insightful – and terrifying – video on what is (and isn’t) being taught about abortion in schools. 


Mixed results for abortion rights in Bolivia

‘On February 13, Bolivia’s highest court issued a long-awaited ruling addressing provisions of the country’s penal code that criminalize abortion, except in cases of rape, incest, or when a woman’s life or health is endangered.’ The ruling gave cause for both celebration and concern for reproductive rights activists; read more.


Challenging the total criminalisation of abortion in El Salvador

‘Quintanilla says she was interrogated while still under the effect of anaesthetic, handcuffed and brought from hospital to a cell in a police jail, accused of having killed her child. Within 10 months, she was convicted of aggravated murder and sentenced to 30 years in prison.’ Read more about the disastrous effects of illegal abortion in El Salvador — and the women’s rights champions fighting back.


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Contact us at choice@abortionrights.org.uk“>choice@abortionrights.org.uk or 020 7923 9792