Christian group to sue UK gov’t for allowing at-home abortions during pandemic
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LONDON, England, April 1, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – A U.K. Christian pro-life group has announced that it plans to mount a legal challenge against the government’s emergency legislation allowing women to kill their preborn children at home by using both stages of a chemical abortion process during the coronavirus pandemic.
The U.K. government has changed the abortion law three times within the space of a week after announcing last week it would allow at-home abortions, then reversing the decision within 24 hours, before again announcing Sunday evening that the “DIY abortions” will be allowed “on a temporary basis.”
Andrea Williams, chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre (CLC), told The Telegraph that the new law is “an undemocratic and unconstitutional decision directly contrary to what the Health Secretary stated on the floor of the House of Commons one week ago.”
“Our legal team has started working on a judicial review claim today,” Williams announced. “This is the biggest change in abortion law in over 50 years without any democratic or parliamentary scrutiny. It is a scandalous act.”
Williams said the U.K. government has “allowed itself to be used by the pro-abortion lobby under the pretext of the coronavirus crisis to extend abortion on demand” and that accessing abortion has “nothing to do with coronavirus.”
“This decision will mean that vulnerable women will not get the care and attention they deserve; there will be no way of understanding whether a woman is being coerced into an abortion or of offering alternative options in her situation.”
Another U.K. pro-life group, the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC), has said the new law breaches existing abortion legislation and that they too are seeking legal advice and may mount a judicial review opposing the new policy.
Bishop John Sherrington, the English and Welsh Catholic bishops’ spokesman on life issues, said the new laws will “further endanger women,” such as those pressured into having abortions by abusive partners.
“We understand why the government wishes to keep women away from hospital at this time but are shocked to hear that the Secretary of State for Health plans to introduce temporary measures to allow telemedicine and early DIY abortion at home without any medical supervision present,” Sherrington said.
“These measures fundamentally change access to abortion in England and Wales for the foreseeable future. Whilst these are emergency times, these measures further endanger women who, for example, are rushed into decisions by abusive partners and act without any proper consultation,” he continued.
“They diminish the seriousness with which these decisions should be taken and the physical and psychological dangers of the administration of these drugs at home.”
Abortion by pill (chemical abortion) works by starving the preborn baby of progesterone, an important hormone needed to keep him alive, and then causing the mother’s uterus to contract to expel the dead baby. Chemical abortions are committed during the first trimester of pregnancy.