Proposals to Make Abortion Legal up to Birth in Scotland Must Be Rejected
With the Scotland Act 2016, powers to legislate on abortion have now been devolved to Holyrood. As such, Engender, Amnesty Scotland, NUS Scotland, Scottish Women’s Aid and other groups published a report recommending that Scotland completely decriminalise abortion.
This rhetoric which talks about abortion as “the only type of healthcare in which this criminalisation exists” effectively masks the reality of what is actually being proposed. Namely, that abortion should be made legal throughout all nine months of pregnancy on demand. Complete decriminalisation means allowing abortion up until the moment of birth; it means allowing late term abortion whereby a child is given a lethal injection in the womb and the child’s mother subsequently gives birth to a dead baby; it means permitting in law the killing of a child well past the point of viability.
It means permitting the deeply misoginistic practice of allowing abortion because the child is a girl...
Of course, any abortion at any stage is a great tragedy but these proposals are particularly shocking and can only seriously be proposed in complete isolation from the actual reality of what this procedure involves.
These group are also urging the Scottish government to remove the legal requirement for two doctors to approve an abortion, and to allow women to perform abortions in their own homes by taking abortion pills.
The requirement for two doctors to approve an abortion is not only supposed to act as some minimal protection of the life of the unborn child but also acts as a protection for women to ensure that, among other things, they fully understand what abortion involves and are not being coerced into it. The removal of this requirement simple increases the risk for the most vulnerable women seeking abortions.
The Scottish Government has said that there are no plans to change abortion law in Scotland and we need to do our part to ensure that the abortion law does change for the better.