Amnesty welcomes publication of report on abortion law reform

REPORT SHOWS CONSENSUS AMONG MEDICAL PROFESSION THAT THE CURRENT LAW IS NOT FIT FOR PURPOSE

Whilst this report calls for a change to the law in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities, it is not the limit of the change that is needed which must go further and include the decriminalisation of abortion’ - Grainne Teggart

Grainne Teggart, Campaigns Manager for Amnesty International said:

“We welcome the publication of this report, it confirms what we have long known, that reform of our law is needed. It also demonstrates that the medical profession, alongside Amnesty and others, want to see change legislated for.  Our current law is not fit for purpose for both women and those who care for them. No woman, including those whose pregnancies have been given a fatal foetal diagnosis, should be forced to board a plane to access this healthcare.

“Whilst this report calls for a change to the law in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities, it is not the limit of the change that is needed which must go further and include the decriminalisation of abortion. We call on the UK Government to legislate for abortion reform without any further delay.”

Sarah Ewart, whose pregnancy was given a fatal foetal diagnosis and had to travel to England for a termination, said:

“I am an ordinary woman who suffered a very personal family tragedy, which the law in Northern Ireland turned into a living nightmare.

“My baby was given a diagnosis of anencephaly, a fatal abnormality where the brain does not develop and there is no skull. The law here meant I had to travel to access this healthcare at a time when I needed my family, friends and the support of the medical professionals I was used to around me.  I welcome the publication of the report and the support from the medical profession that change is needed. I hope the UK Government pays attention to the recommendation of this report and helps women access services here at home”.

ENDS

Report can be found here https://www.health-ni.gov.uk/news/healthcare-and-law-termination-pregnancy-fatal-fetal-abnormality-publication-report-0

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