The disabled have the right to life too – SPUC prepares for Supreme Court Ruling
6 June 2018
The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) has said that the job of a Human Rights Commission is to promote human rights for all, especially vulnerable groups like the disabled.
The remarks come ahead of a Supreme Court Judgement tomorrow on whether Northern Ireland’s abortion laws, in particular with regard to disabled babies, or those who are conceived as a result of sexual crime, are compatible with the European Convention of Human Rights. It is also the day that the 2017 abortion statistics for England and Wales are to be published.
SPUC will be holding an act of witness outside the Supreme Court from 9am to 12pm, and will be available for comment.
Ahead of the hearing, Liam Gibson, SPUC’s Northern Ireland development officer, said:
“Abortion is not a human right. No such right has ever been recognised in international law. The right to life, on the other hand, is the fundamental right shared by every member of the human family, regardless of their disabilities or the circumstances of their conception. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Declaration of the Rights of the Child make it clear that the right to life applies even before birth.”
“It is the job of the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission to promote human rights and in particular the rights of vulnerable groups like the disabled,” he continued. “Instead, the Commission has waged a legal battle to overturn laws in Northern Ireland which protect unborn children from being aborted simply because they have a disability.”
“Unlike the Abortion Act, which permits the abortion of disabled babies right up to birth, Northern Ireland’s law makes no distinction between the legal status of children who are able-bodied and children with disabilities. It has also saved the lives of an estimated 100,000 babies who would probably been aborted had the Abortion Act been introduced in 1967.”
"Abortion is not healthcare, it is an act of lethal violence directed at a child before birth. Rather than benefit women it has been shown to cause serious harm to some women both physically and psychologically,” he concluded.
SPUC representatives will also be available for comment on the publication of the 2017 abortion statistics.
For more information, please contact Liam Gibson, SPUC's development officer in Northern Ireland:
Dr Anthony McCarthy, SPUC Director of Education and Communications can be contacted on: