Although the vast majority of students in Britain are pro-choice, the dominance of the anti-choice lobby in the abortion debate has a silencing effect on student opinion. The distorted media coverage gives the impression that abortion is massively controvercial and that most people think it is fundamentally wrong.
Such a taboo is dangerous in three ways. Firstly it acts as a barrier for women facing an unwanted pregnancy to openly discuss their options and gain support. Secondly, it prevents students from accessing evidenced based and balanced information, necessary for them to form a considered opinion on the issue. Thirdly, it silences supporters of a woman’s right to choose and critically weakens the ability of the pro-choice movement to defend women’s crucial rights.
To help overcome these barriers, Abortion Rights has launched a new leaflet It’s OK to talk about abortion , supported by Marie Claire magazine and the NUS Women’s Campaign. Pro-choice students can help by downloading the leaflet and photocopying it doublesided to distribute on campuses.