protesters-outside-abortion-clinicby Kelli

We need to talk about abortion because the phoney war (small groups of vigil-antis outside clinics, praying, thrusting rosary beads and plastic foetuses into women’s hands, giving out leaflets packed with fake science and scare stories) – is over. For the first time an anti-abortion group has declared real war on abortion clinics with new levels of harassment that have left staff feeling beleaguered, and women intimidated, invaded and upset.

They are lining the streets around clinics with vast photographs of bloody foetuses, approaching staff and members of the public and filming them on discretely positioned cameras without their consent. They are challenging women about the treatment they are seeking and following women down the street with complete disregard for their privacy and sense of safety, causing as much distress as they can. They have learned from their American colleagues that if you can’t make accessing or providing an abortion legally impossible, then you should aim to make it intolerable.

In response to this intensification of clinic protests, abortion provider Bpas has launched the ‘back off’ campaign. The campaign calls on the government to create protest-free access zones directly around clinics – to allow staff and members of the public safe passage as they come and go.

The protestors have, of course, cried foul….

[W]e know from the American experience we can’t turn a blind eye to abortion opponents and just hope they’ll go away. If we want to protect our rights, we really do need to talk about how much we cherish them. We need to talk about abortion.

~ Lisa Hallgarten, Huffington Post, November 30

[Photo via from a 2012 protest of Northern Ireland’s first abortion clinic]

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...