The BMA Must Not Support Abortion Up to Birth
IN BRIEF: The BMA are deciding whether they will support the complete decriminalisation of abortion. This will mean increasing the abortion limit to 28 weeks and possibly even birth. Shockingly, decriminialisation will also making sex-selective abortion - the killing of girls for the crime of being girls - perfectly lawful. We must stop the BMA from doing this...
The British Medical Association (BMA) is holding its Annual Representative Meeting (ARM) on the 25-29 June and, once again, certain factions within the British Medical Association (BMA) are trying to force the organisation to support the total decriminalisation of abortion. This will mean that the abortion limit is increased to at least 28 weeks (7 months) and, if the proponents of decriminalisation get their way, will mean that abortion is made legal throughout all nine months of pregnancy for any reason whatsoever.
This would mean making sex-selective abortion legal. It would be perfectly lawful to kill unborn girls for the crime of being girls. This is a revolting form of sexism which no civilised society should tolerate.
It’s hard to believe that there are people seriously advocating this practice, but unless we do something, the BMA could adopt “decriminalisation” - potentially abortion up to birth - as their official position on abortion. Prominent abortionist and advocate for decriminalisation Wendy Savage has given vocal support to abortion on the grounds of the sex of the child.
Not only is abortion up until birth deeply unjust, these proposals are also seriously out of step with what the public, and women in particular, want.
A ComRes poll last month:
• Only 1% want the abortion time limit raised to birth
• 70% of women would like the current time limit for abortion to be lowered.
• 59% of women would like the abortion time limit lowered to 16 weeks or lower.
• 93% of women want independent abortion counselling introduced.
• 91% of women want an explicit sex-selective abortion ban.
• 79% of general population want a five-day consideration period before abortion.
• 84% of women want improved pregnancy support for women in crisis.
• 76% of population want introduction of doctors to verify that women are not coerced.
• 70% of parents want introduction of parental consent for girls 15 and under to get abortions.
The vast majority of women do not want abortion up to birth. In fact, as can be seen, 70% of women want the abortion limit lowered. A clear majority want to see an outright ban on sex-selective abortion.
Additionally, from a legal standpoint, these motions appear to be extremely poorly thought through. By removing sections 58 and 59 of the Offences Against the Person Act (which is what decriminalisation entails), it would become extremely difficult to prosecute in cases of forced abortion.
In R. v Magira  the husband wanted his wife to have an abortion. She wanted to keep the baby. So he went online and ordered abortion pills that he gave her without her knowledge or consent. In this case, fortunately, the pills did not work and the child was born healthy. The husband was convicted of attempting to procure an abortion and sentenced to three years in prison.
This conviction is entirely right and just – it is not controversial, but repealing sections 58 and 59 will make it much harder to secure convictions of this kind of which there are several every year.
Please sign this petition against any motions in the BMA ARM which seek to decriminalise abortion and therefore introduce abortion on demand, for any reason (including for sex-selection) up to 28 weeks, or even up to birth.