SPUC challenges Northern Ireland government's abortion guidelines
5 June 2009
SPUC challenges Northern Ireland government's abortion guidelines Belfast, 5 June 2009 - The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) is to mount a legal challenge to the Northern Ireland government's guidelines on abortion.
The Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety has rejected SPUC's call for the guidance to be withdrawn and replaced.
Liam Gibson of SPUC Northern Ireland said: "The law in Northern Ireland not only safeguards the lives of unborn children but also protects women from the terrible damage which abortion can cause. By issuing guidance that distorts the law, the department of health has created a grave threat to unborn children, to the safety of women and to the rights of medical professionals. "There is never any genuine medical justification for abortion but this guidance is so fatally flawed that it will lead to the situation where no abortion in Northern Ireland would be considered impermissible. Doctors, nurses and midwives would be compelled to facilitate abortions even though they could be at risk of committing a criminal offence. "The pro-life movement has done everything possible to ensure that this guidance fully reflected the law. Unfortunately the department has simply refused to take on board the legal protection for children prior to birth, leaving us no choice but to bring this matter before the courts." SPUC has made a statement of the relief sought and the grounds for the application which was lodged in court today.