26/09/2019

Hundreds Of Healthcare Staff Oppose Abortion Liberalisation

Hundreds of healthcare workers have written to NI Secretary Julian Smith to express their opposition to plans to liberalise abortion laws here.

Doctors, nurses and midwives united to send a message that as health professionals, they want reassurance as "conscientious objectors" that they will not have to perform or assist with abortions.

One GP who signed the letter told the BBC that he was not yet aware of any preparations to prepare staff for the law change.
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Restrictions on abortions in the region will be drastically reduced unless the Stormont Assembly is restored by October 21, after MPs passed the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Act in July.

The move placed a duty on the UK Government to intervene and provide abortion access.

Meanwhile, a group opposed to any change in the law, Midwives for Both Lives, has written to the Department of Health, The Northern Ireland Office and the Royal College of Midwives to demand the same protections for midwives in the rest of the UK.

The group said there is "currently no conscientious objection in law in NI for midwives…in contrast to our counterparts in mainland UK who are protected under law and under the NMC code."



(JG/MH)

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