Clare Murphy, Chief Executive of BPAS, said:
“We are shocked and appalled by the decision to sentence a mother-of-three to 28 months in prison for using abortion pills to end her own pregnancy.
“No woman can ever go through this again. In their sentencing remarks, the judge made it that women will only be protected from prosecution if MPs bring forward legal change. The has never been a clearer mandate for parliamentary action, and the need has never been so urgent. Over the last three years, there has been an increase in the numbers of women and girls facing the trauma of lengthy police investigations and threatened with up to life imprisonment under our archaic abortion law. On Saturday, BPAS, alongside the Women’s Equality Party, Fawcett Society, and many others will be taking to the streets in London to demand legislative reform.
“Vulnerable women in the most incredibly difficult of circumstances deserve more from our legal system. In 2020, MPs in Westminster amended the law in Northern Ireland to remove the threat of criminal sanction for any woman who attempted to end their own pregnancy. MPs must extend the same protection so that no more women in these desperate circumstances in the UK are ever threatened with prison again.”
For further information, please contact Katherine O’Brien, BPAS Associate Director of Campaigns and Communications, on katherine.o’firstname.lastname@example.org or 07881 265276.
The British Pregnancy Advisory Service, BPAS, is a charity that sees over 100,000 women a year for reproductive healthcare services including pregnancy counselling, abortion care, miscarriage management and contraception at clinics across Great Britain.
BPAS exists to further women’s reproductive choices. We believe all women should have the right to make their own decisions in and around pregnancy, from the contraception they use to avoid pregnancy right the way through to how they decide to feed their newborn baby, with access to evidence-based information to underpin their choices and high-quality services and support to exercise them.
BPAS also runs the Centre for Reproductive Research and Communication, CRRC. Through rigorous multidisciplinary research and impactful communication, the CRRC aims to inform policy, practice, and public discourse. You can find out more here.