Abortion is healthcare, and it's time to decriminalise it in the UK. Add your name to demand change.
Contrary to popular belief, abortion is still a criminal offence in the UK due to an old Victorian law passed fifty years before women won the right to vote.
According to the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act, anyone who ends a pregnancy without permission from two doctors can face up to life in prison.
Abortion is healthcare. It’s time the law treats it as such. We should all have our healthcare needs met safely, including abortion.
It’s a basic ask. Abortion is available on request in 22 European countries – including France, Greece and Iceland. 85% of the UK public already believe women should have the right to abortion – it’s time to decriminalise it.
JOIN US if you agree that abortion should be removed from criminal law in England, Scotland and Wales.
Why is this important?
The fact that an old criminal law still stands means that pregnancies can be policed – with devastating impacts.
In 2021, a 15-year-old girl who had an unexplained early stillbirth was subjected to a year-long criminal investigation that involved having her phone and laptop searched.
In another case in 2022, a woman was kept in a prison cell for 36 hours after having a stillbirth – because of suspicions she’d had an abortion after the legal cutoff point.
Even if the worst doesn't happen, toxic stress during a person's pregnancy affects foetal development. Do you believe people suffering miscarriages and stillbirths should be locked in prison cells and interrogated?
The body doesn't know the difference between miscarriage and abortion – neither should the law.
Criminalising abortion stigmatises this form of healthcare and can cause significant harm to a person’s health and wellbeing. It can delay or prevent access to post abortion care, intensify shame and stigma, heighten barriers in access to legal care and create a chilling effect on medical professionals’ provision of information.
Most European countries have abortion on request. This means that if you want an abortion, nobody (not even a doctor) can stand in your way. This means the ultimate decision on whether to continue or end a pregnancy belongs to the pregnant person alone.
Abortion is healthcare. It’s time for the U.K. to decriminalise it.
In principle I agree but by keeping it illegal to have an abortion for social reasons women are currently protected. Men cannot force women to have the an abortion if they don’t want it and further down the line men cannot worm their way out of child support because they said they wanted an abortion. That will happen if we make it fully legal to abort for social reasons.
Should be your own body , your own choice every time with any medical procedure.
Abortion is a right for every woman do we want to go back to days, of back street abortions. No we do not.
I don’t think men should have a say in this at all, but will sign. It has to be a woman’s choice
A woman’s right to an abortion should have nothing to do with politicians, or for that matter male politicians.
This should never happen
Mistreatment of the 15-year old girl and the lady who had the still birth look wrong to me, but that does not mean that abortion on demand is correct.
Someone wrote that “a person’s body is their own affair”, but a child in the womb is not the woman’s body. It is in her body, but it is not part of her body.
Elsewhere a man wrote that he doesn’t think men should have a say in this at all, that it has to be a woman’s choice. Why? It is the baby they are killing. They get no choice.
Part of the problem is knowing when the fetus can be properly described as a human being. Having human cells does not *thereby* make it a person, but it is definitely a person way, way before 9 months is up. What right does anyone have to kill such a child?
I have known women who have miscarried, I have known women who had ectopic pregnancies that had to be aborted, I have known someone who had an abortion. I have two very loved children of my own. I support women having a free choice. Pregnancy is a blessing but it is hard, it is painful, it is heartbreaking and parenthood is also hard and painful and heartbreaking. Are you telling me women don’t have the capacity or right to decide for themselves if they think becoming a parent is a good, healthy and responsible choice in their particular situation? That decision has to be made keeping the mother and the child’s best interests in mind. The mother has a life too! And what about the child’s life after birth? They will have health conditions, social circumstances and finances that they will know and an outsider will not. Let me tell you, abortion is not the easy way out. It is the last, excrutiating resort.
Unless of course you want to sit there and tell me no living cells can be removed from a human body, in which case, let’s talk about cancer and parasites. Are they not alive?
Shame on those of you sitting there in judgement of others but not lifting a finger to help those children and mothers live while they are alive.
I hope I am not arrogant enough to make decisions about other women’s lives. It is every woman’s right to do what will sustain her life and that of her family. This is a woman only issue. Men can have a say when women force vasectomies on them.
But wanna say that this really is quite helpful , Thanks for taking your time to write this. william hill live