Demo speech: Abortion rights are human rights

Today we end the shame, stigmatization and the criminalization of women who choose to terminate their pregnancies.

Doctors for Choice UK, we are a group of doctors and medical students who trust women, who believe in the fundamental right of bodily autonomy, and believe ultimately that women’s rights, their health, and their well being must be put first.

We call on Westminster, to decriminalise abortion, across all UK nations.

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Under the current archaic legislation, all women in the UK, including you and I, if we were to have an abortion, without the permission of 2 doctors, or not within a government sanctioned clinic, then we would be at risk life imprisonment.

In Northern Ireland, we now have one of the most restrictive abortion law worldwide.

Northern Irish women have to endure long, sometimes painful journey to access safe abortion care, at a significant financial and personal cost.

If they are unable to make that journey, or cannot afford to, then many result to buying unknown pills online. Taking them without medical supervision, putting their health and safety at risk, and risking prosecution.

Under the current legislation, it makes it very difficult for colleagues in Northern Ireland, to adequately support women who are seeking an abortion. It also makes its difficult for care home who have endured complications post-abortion.

It is important to clear up the myths. Decriminalisation does not mean deregulation.

Removing criminal sanctions on women and health professionals, would allow us to design services and deliver care that’s evidence-based and put’s the women’s health and her well being first.

All women, regardless of where they live must have the right to access safe, legal, compassionate abortion care.

Today we end the shame, end the stigmatisation, and call on our politicians, to put the rights and well-being women firsther well being first.