British abortion boss: Extreme New York bill "is what many of us have been campaigning for in the UK".
7 February 2019
The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) has warned that abortion rights lobbyists in the UK are seeking to emulate controversial abortion reforms in New York.
People across the world have been shocked at the passing of an extreme new abortion bill in New York, which removes abortion from penal law, and allows it up to birth in some cases. This has been compounded by some American politicians defending abortion at the very moment of birth, and even infanticide.
Seeking to copy New York law
Writing in Spiked online, Ann Furedi, chief executive of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), praises the horrific new law in New York as "a breakthrough for choice". She goes on to say (emphasis ours):
"New York State has just signed into law an abortion-rights bill that is close to what many of us have been campaigning for in the UK. The Reproductive Health Act (RHA) removes the need for a doctor to perform some abortions, and takes abortion out of the criminal code, making it a public-health issue.
This is pretty much what the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, and other pro-choice organisations that are supporting the #WeTrustWomen campaign, have been asking British politicians to support."
She is referring to the campaign to decriminalise abortion - to remove it from the criminal law – which has been spearheaded in Parliament by Labour MPs Diana Johnson and Stella Creasy.
Supporting late term abortion
Ms Furedi defends the aspect of the New York law which has sparked the most outrage - late-term abortions. She writes: "What we’d like in Britain is for politicians to accept what policymakers in New York have agreed. Paradoxically, what abortion providers in New York need is public and political support for the other change introduced by the RHA – a provision that we have in Britain already, and is seen by most people as obvious and humane. The clause in the RHA that has caused the most heated debate is one that allows abortions after 24 weeks in cases where there is an 'absence of fetal viability'."
She leaves out the fact that the RHA also allows third trimester abortions if the "life or health" of the mother is at risk - a notoriously slippery criteria - but correctly says, "In Britain, since 1990, the law has allowed for abortion without time limit when a pregnancy is affected by a serious abnormality."
SPUC's Michael Robinson said: "The New York legislation is one of the most extreme abortion regimes we have ever seen. It is therefore important for people and politicians in the UK to know that Mrs. Furedi and her 'We Trust Women' Campaign would like to see similar measures written into UK law. Indeed, the measures passed in New York include that if a child is born alive after a failed abortion attempt, the medical providers in attendance are no longer required to provide immediate medical care to save the child.
"It is chilling that a UK abortion provider, especially one that is funded by public money, is lobbying for something like this," Mr Robinson continued. "It is also chilling that she defends late term abortions when the baby is severely disabled. Ms Furedi says the "numbers are tiny" for these types of abortions, but a recent parliamentary question revealed that nearly 15,000 babies that were over 20 weeks gestation have died by abortion in the last five years, and a casual look at the abortion statistics shows that the majority are not for "serious abnormalities", however the term is defined. This "obvious and humane" provision has led to heart-breaking stories of babies being born alive during abortions and left to die.
"People in the UK have been horrified by what has happened in New York. Any attempts to emulate it and make the abortion situation any worse than it is already must be resisted."
Notes to editors:
Michael Robinson, SPUC Director of Parliamentary Communications and Campaigns can be contacted on: