Abortion Rights Blog

The national pro-choice campaign

Press Release: Abortion Rights UK calls for BBC enquiry into filming outside abortion clinic


Abortion Rights UK has called for the BBC to launch an enquiry into why a production company was allowed to set up cameras and film outside an abortion and sexual health clinic without the permission of the clinic or of service users.

Voltage TV, a production company contracted to BBC3 admits that they set up cameras and recording equipment without warning outside the BPAS (British Pregnancy Advisory Service) in Stratford, east London on 9th Sept 2014.

BPAS confirmed the company had not asked in advance for permission to film. Clinic staff asked the crew to leave, which they refused to do. Voltage TV have said the filming was for a BBC3 series Extreme at 18 featuring a teenager who participates in aggressive protests and pickets of abortion clinics.

Abortion Rights has lodged a complaint with the BBC demanding that a full investigation take place into the matter. 

Abortion Rights Chair, Kerry Abel commented:

“The provision of sexual health services in the UK is dependent upon service users being confident that their privacy will be respected. To arrive for an appointment at a sexual health clinic to see a full-scale production team outside with professional cameras and sound-recording equipment is beyond horrifying. The likelihood that a BBC-sponsored crew has effectively intimidated women into not attending medical appointments is high and the potential consequences of that unthinkable.”