A married couple I knew very well were advised by the medical profession to abort their youngest child due to the mother’s ongoing battle with Multiple Sclerosis. They decided against the Doctors advice and the mother wasn’t affected adversely from the birth. Moreover, when that perfectly healthy girl grew up the father contracted Motor Neurone disease and she became an amazingly, kind and attentive nurse to both her parents, ensuring that neither of them had to go into hospital.
What a loss to that family it would have been to have aborted, even on medical advice which would have been perfectly legal in Northern Ireland.
Abortion for convenience undermines the human right to life of the most vulnerable in our society.
It is our responsibility as adults to protect the most vulnerable, if possible and I consider that the present Northern Ireland abortion legislation does that.
In 2018 the Westminster Women and Equalities Committee launched an inquiry into Northern Ireland’s abortion law. In April 2019 the report concluding their inquiry was published. It calls for law change to allow abortion in cases of “fatal foetal abnormality”. The main report was not adopted unanimously, and with a vote of four to two, an alternative Hughes Report was also published.
Interestingly, the first item listed in the Committees Terms of Reference, is their desire to hear from the general public, women impacted by the law, and medical and legal professionals in Northern Ireland.
Over 88% of all the submissions they received from the public were against law change. We are highlighting just a few of those submissions, which are publicly available. All of the published submissions can be viewed here.