Last night, Diana Johnson, the MP who has been pushing to decriminalise abortion, held an adjournment debate on Abortion Act 1967: 50th Anniversary. She used the opportunity to complain that “no Minister from the Department of Health or the Government Equalities Office has attended any of the events marking the enactment” of the Act, and that money has been granted to Life Charity to help vulnerable pregnant women.
Destroyed by sorrow
While Diana Johnson and a number of other MPs used the debate to further the decriminalisation agenda, others pointed out some of the harm that abortion does to women. Jim Shannon, the DUP MP for Strangford intervened to say that far from being “somehow an expression of women’s rights,” abortion “is so often the means by which vulnerable young women are themselves destroyed by the sorrow it can naturally engender.”
“Even when abortion itself does not cause the destruction of women,” he went on, “their mistreatment by the industry that provides abortion daily in this country clearly can.” When Jackie Doyle-Price, the minister responding on behalf of the Government, listed maternal mortality figures, he asked: “Does that figure include those who committed suicide as a result of having an abortion and the effect it had on them?”
Pressure and distress
Diana Johnson used the plight of victims of domestic abuse to argue that abortion provision needs to be expanded. Despite Ms Johnson twice refusing to give way to her, Fiona Bruce, the pro-life Conservative MP for Congleton, responded that the requirement of the agreement of two doctors, (which 72% of the public supports) might be the last chance for women in an abusive relationship “to talk to someone in a safe environment about the pressure that they might be being put under to have an abortion.”
Finally, Mary Glindon, Labour MP for North Tyneside, mentioned SPUC’s new Abortion and Women’s Health report, and asked the minister if she shared her concerns that “counselling and support for women who suffer mental distress after they have had an abortion is seriously lacking in this country?”
sLifeNews Note: Courtesy of SPUC. The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children is a leading pro-life organization in the United Kingdom.