The Government announced today that Northern Irish women travelling to England for abortions will no longer have to pay for their terminations.
These abortions will be paid for through the Government Equalities Office with additional funding.
A report published in January 2017, by the campaign group, Both Lives Matter, calculated that over 100,000 lives have been saved in Northern Ireland because it chose not to enact the 1967 Abortion Act.
May 2017 polling from ComRes showed that 70% of women want to see the time limit for abortion reduced to 20 weeks or less and 91% of women believe that gender-selective abortion should be made specifically illegal. The polling also showed only 1% want the time limit extended to birth.
Life spokeswoman, Clara Watson, said:
“This action by the Department for Women and Equalities undermines the Government’s neutrality on this issue and shows an abject disdain for Parliament, by seeking to bring this change in via the back door, avoiding full debate on this issue.
This move would undermine the authority of the Northern Irish legislature. The Belfast High Court only today ruled that Northern Irish abortion laws are to be decided by the people of Northern Ireland, through their democratically elected representatives.
Abortion provider, the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, is set to financially benefit directly from the decision. It is disgraceful that a lobby group with a direct financial interest has earned more business from this Government decision.”