‘Decriminalisation of abortion: a step forward for women?’

Image Source:

‘Decriminalisation of abortion: a step forward for women?’

Does the decriminalisation of abortion in England and Wales signal progress for women and the pro-choice movement, or are most women still left without the choice?

A bill created to repeal the 1861 law criminalising abortion in England and Wales has been voted in by MPs with 172 in favour and 142 against. Although abortion has only recently been decriminalised, the procedure has been available to women in England, Scotland and Wales since the 1967 Abortion Act, which meant a pregnancy could be aborted before 24 weeks if two doctors approved. According to the BMA, more than 90% of abortions take place at 13 weeks or before. Doctors occasionally approve abortions past 24 weeks in exceptional circumstances, but under the 1967 Act these women are committing a criminal offence, as are the women who buy abortion pills without a doctor’s consent. Online abortion pills are increasing in availability and also in popularity, with 375 doses sent to addresses in England, Scotland and Wales being seized in 2016, up from 270 in 2015 and 5 in 2013. Two women in the UK have been jailed for terminating their pregnancies using online abortion pills in recent years- one in 2012 and another in 2015- with both women being well over 24 weeks pregnant. Does the decriminalisation of abortion in England and Wales signal progress for women and the pro-choice movement, or are most women still left without the choice?

{{Article.ViewHeading}}

{{Article.ViewSubtitle}}

{{Article.GivenBy}}

    {{AccountDetail.FirstName}} {{AccountDetail.LastName}}

    {{AccountDetail.FirstName}} {{AccountDetail.LastName}}

    Comments

    {{comment.Comment}}

    {{reply.ReplayUserName}}

    {{reply.Reply}}

    {{AccountDetail.FirstName}} {{AccountDetail.LastName}}

    Comments

    {{comment.Comment}}

    {{reply.ReplayUserName}}

    {{reply.Reply}}

    {{AccountDetail.FirstName}} {{AccountDetail.LastName}}