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Abortion survivor brave but upper limit move dangerous, says SPUC

1 December 2005

Abortion survivor brave but upper limit move dangerous, says SPUC Westminster, 1st December 2005 - The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) has written a letter to parliamentarians praising the testimony of abortion survivor Gianna Jessen but warned that moves to lower the upper time-limit for abortion are misleading and dangerous. The full text of the letter is reproduced below. Gianna Jessen/abortion law reform meeting in Parliament this Tuesday Dear parliamentarian, Gianna Jessen is very brave and worthy to speak out about her experience of surviving an abortion - it testifies to the humanity of the aborted child and the barbarity of abortion. However, SPUC (Society for the Protection of Unborn Children) is more concerned than ever about current proposals to review the abortion law. Under the pretext of lowering the "upper time limit" for abortion, the pro-abortion lobby is clearly hoping to fool the public into supporting changes to the abortion law which will make abortion even more widely available. A recent adjournment debate revealed the agenda for easier and more widespread abortions behind the time-limit proposals. Dr Evan Harris MP called for abortion law and practice to be extended at the same time as adjusting the 24-week limit. Dr Harris specifically called for: * first-trimester abortions to be made easier; * the safeguard of two doctors' signatures for abortions to be abolished; * chemical abortions (using RU486) to be permitted at home ("bedroom abortions "); and * the 1967 Abortion Act to be extended to Northern Ireland. A review of abortion law, given the balance of opinion amongst parliamentarians, will allow the pro-abortion lobby the opportunity to fulfil Dr Harris' agenda. Twenty-four weeks is not the upper time-limit for abortion in Britain, but 40 weeks. Since 1990, when efforts to lower the abortion limit were hijacked, abortion up to birth has been permitted. Post-24-week abortions are usually, but not exclusively, performed under the Abortion Act's section 1(d), disability. Changing the 24-week limit, which only applies to section 1(a), will not end abortions on viable babies. Such a change would only be agreed in exchange for a right to abortion on demand in early pregnancy. This will leave women more vulnerable to the pressures that lead to abortions, and an increase in the number of abortions should be expected. Creating an effective "right to abortion" in English law would serve the key demand of the pro-abortion lobby, which is pressing for the United Nations to declare abortion on demand a universal human right. The more states whose laws formally permit abortion on demand the easier this will be for the pro-abortion lobby to achieve. We are aware that others may give you different advice. We have expressed our view frankly and widely, and while we would not seek to interfere in your relations with others, our position on this is very firmly held. It has been fully discussed, and agreed by our grass-roots members (through our national representative structures) and our expert advisers. SPUC is the UK's longest established pro-life group and, we believe, has the largest and most politically active membership. Yours sincerely, Paul Tully

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