Change Northern Ireland's abortion laws by amending the NI assembly's devolved powers
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Even though Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom, pregnancy termination remains illegal in the country in almost every circumstance, including rape, incest and fatal foetal abnormality (meaning that even if someone's pregnancy isn't progressing how it should and they are 100% going to miscarry, they STILL has to carry the foetus to full term or until they have a natural miscarriage...).
Anyone involved in an unlawful abortion can be sentenced to up to life imprisonment, including doctors.
Numerous people have recently been prosecuted for having pregnancy terminations or helping others to do so, including a mother who is currently awaiting trial for helping her 15 year old daughter access abortion pills.
Doctors are also at risk of prosecution, meaning that patient confidentiality is void with regards to abortion and miscarriage.
Every day Northern Irish residence are being forced to pay to travel to other countries to have pregnancy terminations costing hundreds, or even thousands. Northern Irish residents do not have access to free abortion healthcare on the NHS, meaning that they would have to pay to have treatment privately in the rest of the UK. This includes people who are told their babies have no chance of surviving outside the womb, with reports of couples having to bring foetal remains back to Northern Ireland in their luggage on planes.
We in the rest of the United Kingdom CAN address the subject and support a law reform in Northern Ireland. Abortion policy is currently devolved to the Northern Irish assembly, however if UK Parliament was to reevaluate and amend the devolved powers, or use alternative legislation to force the Northern Irish assembly to offer the same abortion services as the rest of the UK, people in Northern Ireland could finally be given the acceptable reproductive rights.
1 in 3 people will have an abortion in their lifetime, that does not make them criminals. It is completely unacceptable that those in Northern Ireland are being forced to experience even more emotional trauma than an abortion on its own already brings.
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