MP targeting pro-life vigils refuses to meet women they've helped
13 October 2017
Rupa Huq MP seemed rather flustered on the Daily Politics.
She also didn't answer why she encourages large counter vigils outside the Ealing clinic.
Rupa Huq, the MP planning to use domestic violence legislation to ban pro-life vigils outside abortion clinics, has refused on air to meet any women who have been helped by the organisation that holds them.
The MP for Ealing Central and Action appeared on the Daily Politics today, with Clare McCullough of the Good Counsel Network (GCN) to debate the decision by Ealing council to try and impose a buffer zone around the Marie Stopes clinic there. More than once, she declined to meet any of the hundreds of women who have been given the help and support they needed to allow them to keep their babies.
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After explaining that the GCN is currently housing around 40 women in need, Mrs McCullough said: "I've invited Rupa on twitter to meet these women, but she hasn't responded", whereupon Ms Huq quickly changed the subject to Abort67, who have never held a protest in front of the Marie Stopes clinic in Ealing. Towards the end of the segment, when Mrs McCullough again pointed out that Ms Huq hasn't agreed to help any of the women affected, some of whom are illegal immigrants or victims of domestic violence, she just replied: "I've been here 45 years!"
Protecting women from Marie Stopes
Mrs McCullough also challenged the MP on why, if she doesn't think there should be people on the pavement outside the abortion facility, she has encouraged SisterSupporter, who hold large "counter-vigils" there. "Is it better for a woman to come out and see 50 people standing there?" she asked.
Appearing on the programme also gave Mrs McCullough the opportunity to highlight what Care Quality Commission reports have revealed about what goes on inside Marie Stopes clinics, including a case where inspectors has to intervene to stop clinic staff performing an abortion on a women with learning disabilities without proper consent. When asked whether outside the clinic was the most appropriate place to offer support to women, she said: "While this kind of behaviour is going on inside the clinic, yes we do have to be there."
They also have to be there because Marie Stopes do not offer any alternatives to women in need, Mrs McCullough said. "Women going into an abortion centre have a right to make a real choice."
In recent days, Clare McCullough has also given interviews on the Victoria Derbyshire Show, and on Radio 5 Live.
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