In a shocking vote today, the Royal College of Gynecologists (RCOG) voted to endorse legalizing unlimited abortions up to birth.
The RCOG’s General Council voted to support the removal of all criminal sanctions associated with abortion in the UK. Only 33 council members were allowed to vote on this important issue, despite the RCOG having 14,000 members, fellows and associates.
Currently abortion on demand is only legal in Britain up to 24 weeks and late-term abortions on unborn babies after that point are limited. The vote endorses opening up abortion throughout pregnancy for any reason.
Leading pro-life campaigners in Britain were upset by the vote.
Clara Campbell of the pro-life group Life told LifeNews: “It is shocking that a mere handful of RCOG representatives have decided such a crucial RCOG policy, while their vast membership were not given a vote. If the measures voted through were to be implemented, and all legal sanctions associated with abortion were removed, there would be no law stopping abortion up to the 7 month of pregnancy, and potentially up to birth if the Infant Life Preservation Act was scrapped also.”
“This is an extreme position made with secrecy behind closed doors. Last year, the Royal College of Midwives were slammed by the public and their membership after using shady and undemocratic tactics to adopt a position of decriminalisation,” she added.
Campbell said “The public have been outraged that RCOG President, Lesley Regan, compared abortion to the removal of a bunion in a national newspaper. It is an insidious and insulting comparison and shows she is out of touch with both the public and the rest of the medical profession.”
The RCOG has long allied itself with the abortion industry, even promoting abortions overseas. This needs to be recognised by those in Parliament who will experience greater pressure to open the floodgates to abortion on demand in response to this vote. Despite the current UK legal restrictions on abortion, we have seen scandalous health and safety failures at abortion clinics prompting the Government to impose ratings on them. Imagine what will happen if the RCOG got their wish and there were no laws on abortion and just a system of toothless regulations with no threat of criminal sanctions against a multi-million-pound taxpayer-funded abortion industry guilty of placing the health and safety of women at risk. If the industry gets its way, abortion clinics will likely be licking their lips as they may rake in more than the £100 million they already receive annually.
We urge parliament not to be pressured by the abortion industry and its allies and to act to protect the interest of vulnerable women and their unborn children.
Last week, Professor Lesley Regan, the president of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, compared abortion to “getting your bunions sorted” and called for abortion to be decriminalized. 650 doctors signed a letter protesting her comments.
In a letter to Regan, they wrote: “We represent a variety of positions on the issue of abortion, but believe this motion is out of keeping with both our duties as responsible professionals and the expressed wishes of British women with regards to the legality and regulation of abortion.”
They said her position basically amounts to infanticide because it supports aborting viable, late-term unborn babies for any reason. Some groups and individuals are urging the opposite, that the abortion limit be pushed back to about 20 weeks because babies now are surviving outside the womb before 24 weeks.
Backing the protest, Dr John Etherton, a GP and RCOG member from Lewes, East Sussex, said: “It sounds very benign to say let’s decriminalise a procedure, it sounds acceptable, but the immediate implications are that it opens the gate for infanticide.”
Decriminalization would mean abortions basically would be legal for any reason up to birth in the UK. Currently, abortions are illegal after 24 weeks, except in cases of rape, fetal anomalies or risks to the woman’s life. Women also must receive the permission of two doctors before undergoing an abortion.
The British pro-life group Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) reported about the situation at LifeNews earlier this week:
Prof Regan called for the rule that two doctors must sign for an abortion be scrapped. “At the moment it’s illegal, it’s a crime, and it’s the only medical procedure which requires two doctors’ signatures.” she said. “Theoretically a woman who procures an abortion by purchasing drugs online could be subject to a criminal prosecution and could face life imprisonment. It would be perfectly reasonable to have one doctor to sign consent like anything else. If you go and get your bunions sorted … you would go to a consultation … then you take a decision and the doctor who was competent to undertake the procedure would sign the form too, and that would go forward.”
She also claimed abortions were “either safe in a country with unrestricted access or they become unsafe and result in death. If you don’t support safe abortion then by definition you are supporting and condoning unsafe abortion and serious injuries and death.”
Dr. Anthony McCarthy of SPUC said abortion is treated differently than other medical procedures because it is unlike any other – it kills an unborn baby.
“It beggars belief that Professor Regan describes a life-ending procedure, a lethal attack on an unborn child, in the same breath as going to ‘get your bunions sorted,’” McCarthy said. “Women grieve their babies sometimes for years, acutely regretting the speed and casual approach of abortion providers, and their failure to alert them to help available to have the baby.”
RCOG joins the Royal College of Midwives and British Medical Association, which already voted to support the legalization of abortion throughout pregnancy.