I was very disturbed to read an update from Katherine O’Brien (BPAS Media and Public Policy Manager) regarding anti abortion protests out side clinics.
Katherine has very kindly allowed me to detail the points raised in her email.
1. “The situation is deteriorating – and the government continue to ignore the protesters campaign of intimidation. We have received no Ministerial response from the Home Office, they have refused to meet with us, and they have refused to issue national guidance on dealing with protesters to local police forces. ” I also have had no response from the Home Office.
2. “A clinic is closing down due to protests.” I find this deeply worrying. The lack of action by the Government is causing women’s access to abortion clinics to be reduced. It’s a slippery slope towards the erosion of abortion services. Abortion is legal in this country, women are not doing anything wrong and have a right to safe health care.
3.”The Home Office insists that abortion clinic buffer zones are not necessary, that police have all the powers they need and are able to manage clinic protests locally. We know this is simply not the case. Existing legislation has failed – and the government have failed to take this growing problem seriously. Women are still harassed on a daily basis outside clinics, called murderers, filmed, and confronted with graphic banners. Just last week anti-abortion protesters in Richmond took photos of an ill member of staff being taken away from a clinic in an ambulance. The police refused to do anything about this.” I completely agree. If the law was adequate then these protests would not be happening. Women, staff and members of public would not feel threatened to walk in to a clinic or even walk past a clinic!
4.”……. and have also written to Rt Hon Mike Penning MP, Home Office Minister, again to ask for a meeting as a matter of urgency. Without swift and meaningful action, more clinics will close down due to protests, restricting access to abortion care across the UK”
I think you may agree that this is a truly appalling situation and the Government need to step up and do something about it – urgently!
Bpas have an online form so that you can email your local MP and I urge you to do so.
I can assure you that I will not give up and I will not allow the anti abortion protestors to win. I do need your help though! So keep sharing the petition and keep emailing your MP…..send as many as possible.
Many thanks for all of your support