Associated Press claims "one in four Polish women have had an abortion"
4 November 2016
Dr Rudzinski, a Polish doctor working in Germany, also claims that abortions are being carried out by "tailors, shoemakers and artisans" Image: AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski
The Associated Press news agency has issued an article attacking the restrictive abortion law in Poland. It has been re-published in the Mail Online, Washington Post and through other channels.
The article claims that "at least one in four Polish women have probably had an abortion" - a rate similar to Great Britain.This claim is said to be an estimate issued by the Polish polling company CBOS - but no details of such a survey are given.
The Associated Press article also makes a number of statements that reflect unsubstantiated pro-abortion claims, such as the assertion that most abortions in Poland are performed by "tailors, shoemakers, artisans" rather than by doctors or nurses.
Responding to the report, SPUC's general secretary Paul Tully said:
"The CBOS polling company's website does not indicate how it reached its estimate that more than one in four Polish women have had an abortion. Many older women may have had abortions in the communist era, when abortion rates were reportedly very high, but abortions in Poland declined sharply after communism. What CBOS has polled people about is whether they agreed with abortion for various reasons.Their website has the responses. In most cases, the number of people approving of abortion have declined noticeably.
"CBOS figures show that the number of women who support abortion because the mother is 'in a difficult personal situation' has declined from nearly 40% early in the millennium to 12% in 2016."
“The claims cited by Associated Press about shoemakers performing abortion also look like nonsense," said Mr Tully. "Poland has a better maternal health record than Great Britain."
Poland offers financial support for families with disabled babies
Polish politicians have approved a government plan of bonuses for families that have a disabled child born to them, as part of a policy aimed at curbing the number of abortions.
The "For Life" plan, to take effect next year, provides for a one-time payment of 4,000 zlotys (£820) upon the birth of a disabled child or one with a life-threatening disease.
Government member Elzbieta Witek said the money is intended as the "first step" of government support for families with disabled children.
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Opinions about the film's ending are mixed, but all agree that the performance of Steven Brandon, who himself has Down's syndrome, is the outstanding feature. The Guardian says the film is "a great showcase for the magnetic Brandon, who hopefully will continue to pursue a career as an actor", while the Radio Times says that "it's the wondrously natural and insightful Brandon who holds the picture together."