WESTMINSTER, May 14, 2004 ( – A 14 year-old British girl, after finding herself pregnant, was advised by a school counsellor to have an abortion, also counselling that it would be unnecessary to contact the girl’s parents. The girl went ahead with the chemical, RU-486 abortion, but realized her mistake and changed her mind after consuming only half the requisite dose. The baby did not survive.

Maureen Smith, the girl’s mother, found out about the abortion from a passerby while walking down the street. Furious about being left out of the decision-making process, Smith has filed a lawsuit, charging that the school acted irresponsibly.  The action on the part of the school was described by UK’s Society for the Protection of Unborn Children as ‘government-sanctioned child abuse.’ “This tragic case highlights only too clearly the human cost of the government’s promotion of birth control and abortion in schools,” a SPUC spokesman said. “As her mother rightly said, the abortion will affect this girl for the rest of her life, long after the school’s so-called ‘support’ for her has come to an end. For the school to defend actions that led to a fourteen-year-old destroying the life of her unborn baby whilst her family were deliberately kept in the dark is arrogant and irresponsible.”  Angela Donen, Smith’s lawyer, described the anger of her client, “She didn’t become aware of it through school or her daughter but someone who met her in the street. Her view is that how can it be right that she is not told and she is left picking up the pieces. The girl clearly did not know what to do or she would not have changed her mind later.”

A school spokesman, in a letter sent to parents in September, wrote, “Most pupils wishing to have an individual consultation concerning a health related matter would make an appointment in school themselves. Please note that parental consent for an individual consultation is not required other than in rare circumstances when the young person is judged not to be sufficiently mature to take part independently. . . Consultations remain confidential to the pupils other than where issues of child protection arise when health professionals are legally obliged to disclose such information.”

The SPUC spokesman said, “There are important questions to be asked about a case such as this: how much was she told before going ahead with the abortion? How much time was she given to really think about what she was agreeing to?”  Read the related coverage, “UK Mother Seeks to Change Law after Daughter Traumatized by Secret Abortion,” at: