Fall in number of women going to United Kingdom for abortions

  • Fall in number of women going to United Kingdom for abortions

Fall in number of women going to United Kingdom for abortions

The Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission (NIHRC) had appealed to the court on the grounds the current law was in breach of the European Court of Human Rights - a claim which was narrowly defeated on technical grounds because the proceedings did not involve an identified victim.

On 10 February 2016, the Northern Ireland Assembly voted against legalising abortion in cases of life limiting conditions (sometimes called fatal foetal abnormality), or cases of rape, incest or indecent assault.

Currently, a termination is only permitted in Northern Ireland if a woman's life is at risk or if there is a risk of permanent and serious damage to her mental or physical health.

The Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission said it had challenged the law "in order prevent any woman or girl from having to face the burden of doing so".

Even if numerous opinion polls have shown that the majority of people in Northern-Ireland are in favour of change, so far, Northern-Ireland has blocked all efforts from London to liberalize its abortion law, The New York Times reports.

Pressure has been mounting on Northern Ireland to change its laws, which ban abortion in almost all cases, since the Irish referendum cleared the way for the repeal of a constitutional amendment that imposed similar restrictions.

The UK Government has ultimate responsibility to legislate to reform Northern Ireland's inhumane abortion laws.

More than 900 women from Northern Ireland travelled to England for an abortion past year, according to UK Department of Health figures.

The Northern Ireland Assembly voted in February 2016 against legalising abortion in cases of fatal foetal abnormality and rape or incest.

"No formal declaration has been made by the court and the appeal has been dismissed".

Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom where the procedure is banned except in exceptional circumstances.

"They have said that the law needs to be changed, so we will keep going until we get that change".

Sarah Ewart, supported by Amnesty, will now be taking this case to the Belfast High Court, seeking the declaration of incompatibility that the Human Rights Commission was unable to obtain.

"If a woman takes an abortion pill and has prolonged heavy bleeding, bad pain, faints, or experiences other complications, we strongly encourage her to attend an Emergency Department or GP straight away. But the analysis and comments from the court on the issue of incompatibility will be clearly heard by this House and politicians in Northern Ireland". That historic change has inspired many people in Northern-Ireland to do the same. The NIHRC did not have standing in this case. However, it pointed out that women in Ireland are continuing to contact online providers of abortion pills in large numbers. "It's my strong, personal view that it is completely unsustainable for us to have a different law from the south on abortion".

"Unborn children can not speak for themselves so they need us to be their voice".