On the attempts by anti-choice politicians in Northern Ireland to block upcoming changes to the law on abortion, a bpas spokesperson said:
"Every day at bpas, our staff care for women from Northern Ireland who have been forced to travel overseas, away from their loved ones, to access the essential healthcare that is denied to them at home. For those women making that lonely journey today, and the thousands who have already done so, these last minute manoeuvres will be particularly painful to witness. These women are being used as a political football by politicians who refuse to acknowledge the suffering their actions are causing to their constituents. It is simply cruel.
"Rulings from the UN Committee for the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women have made it clear the the UK government has a legal duty to decriminalise abortion in Northern Ireland under their human rights obligations. The people of Northern Ireland support abortion law reform, and clinicians desperately want to be able to provide the care their patients need.
"For the sake of the women of Northern Ireland, we hope that this attempt to block safe, legal abortion care does not succeed."
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Notes to Editors:
bpas is a charity which sees more than 80,000 women a year for reproductive healthcare services including pregnancy counselling, abortion care, miscarriage management and contraception, at clinics across the UK. It supports and advocates for reproductive choice. More information can be found at bpas.org.