Report: British Agencies Pressure Women to Have Abortions

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 18, 2011   |   3:29PM   |   London, England

A new report issued in the United Kingdom alleges that two abortion businesses, the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (bpas) and Marie Stopes International (MSI), are pressuring women into having abortions.

The new Right to Know Campaign report reveals the NHS governmental health care system is sending women to two abortion businesses under the guise of obtaining abortion counseling and the women are finding themselves getting options counseling from someone selling abortions. The report provides evidence of the financial motivation of abortion providers to grow their market share and shows where counseling comes into conflict with a strong drive to promote abortion.

The report shows MSI and BPAS “are strongly driven by financial motivations and see success in increasing the number of abortions that they perform. Both organizations employ Business Development experts to promote abortion and increase revenues. They have business plan objectives and targets to increase the number of abortions that they perform.”

The great tragedy of this business-like approach is that women who are referred to bpas or MSI for an NHS abortion are denied access to any other source of independent counseling, the report contends. These abortion businesses depend on their income from providing and selling abortion and are not the appropriate place to provide pre-abortion counseling to vulnerable women who need support.

The Right to Know campaign is supporting an effort by MPs Nadine Dorries and Frank Field to change the Health and Social Care Bill to help women who are essentially getting sales pitches for abortion when they seek pregnancy options counseling.

The report identifies two main ways in which abortion is promoted — including mixing abortion counseling in with a medical assessment the first step of an abortion. The campaign cites the BPAS web site as saying, “Counseling is part of the initial consultation at bpas during which you will also have a medical screening so that we can asses your stage of pregnancy and medical history to find out which methods of abortion are most suitable for you.”

Right to Know responds, ,”It is a shock to see abortion counseling combined with the first steps of an abortion, but this is inevitable when counseling is provided by an organization motivated to promote and sell abortion. It’s the very reason why women need a right to independent counseling. Combining counseling with the first medical steps for abortion puts pressure on women and trivializes the decision-making process.”

The second pressure women face to have an abortion comes from sales messages being used to promote the abortion choice even when counseling is being discussed. The report reveals that the marketing techniques used to promote abortion spill over into the counseling arena. This means that women are receiving messages to promote the abortion choice even when they are looking for counseling advice.

The report maintains the two abortion businesses use ‘social validation’ messages, like regularly promoting that ‘one in three women in the UK will have an abortion by the time they are 45″ to make women feel as if abortion is no out of the ordinary decision. The RTK report shows that this is a classic marketing technique to promote abortion sales and is a tactic used by bpas in much of their literature that they give to women visiting their clinics.

“There is no better example of why women urgently need access to independent counseling than the bpas website, where messages designed to promote the abortion choice are in the most prominent position on the counseling page,” Right to Know says. “Imagine your daughter, sister or girlfriend being forced to get counseling from abortion providers who make money from promoting their service and being denied the choice of any other provider. That’s why the amendment to the Health and Social Care bill is so important.”

“It’s very difficult to turn off the marketing and sales tap when you have an organization passionately motivated about promoting the services it is paid to provide. This report shows where the cracks appear and how highly vulnerable women come under pressure to abort their pregnancy,” Right to Know concludes. “We need to see the financial conflicts removed from the provision of pre-abortion counseling.”

The campaign comes after news from the British health department showing abortions on the rise again in the United Kingdom and the number of repeat abortions is still high.

The figures indicate 189,574 abortions were done in 2010, up .3% from the 189,100 abortions in 2009 and 8% more than in 2000 (175,542). Those abortions were done on residents of England and Wales and another 6,535 abortions were done on women and unborn children who are not residents of the United Kingdom. The increase is the first time abortions have gone up since 2006-2007.

The new figures show about half of the abortions were done on women who had an unmarried partner at the time, 26 percent were done on single women and 16 percent of women who had abortions were married at the time.

The stats also showed 3,718 abortions were done on the unborn children of girls under the age of 18, which is down slightly, 12,742 were done on 16-17-year-old girls, and 21,809 were done on girls aged 18 or 19. On the other end of the spectrum, women over the age of 35 had 27,046 abortions.