CHIEF Executive of Christian Concern – Andrea Minichiello Williams, above – has reacted with fury to her outfit’s latest setback in a case involving DIY home abortions introduced to help women during COVID-19 lockdowns in the UK.
According to this report, the Court of Appeal yesterday (Friday) ruled against a challenge by CC to government changes to abortion rules. CC launched a lawsuit against the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) over its change to the regulations, allowing women to have medical abortions at home following a phone or video consultation.
The group took its case to the Court of Appeal after losing a High Court bid in May to bring a claim over the government’s decision.
Williams vowed to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court, and castigated the Appeal Court judges on CC’s website:
The Court of Appeal ruling misconstrues the evidence and arguments presented to court, and has a strong smell of judicial activism, coming from two of the same judges that previously ruled to protect the abortion industry by allowing a ban on peaceful groups standing outside an abortion clinic.
The judges wilfully ignored evidence that would have refuted its claims and seemed intent on bending the law to say what they want, rather than what it means.
The evidence is clear that DIY abortions are not safe. Women have died. Others have suffered. The process has clearly been abused and used unlawfully.
We warned from the beginning that allowing DIY abortions on a ‘temporary basis’ would quickly be turned into a permanent measure. Now the government has made this intention clear.
We will resist this proposal in the consultation with all of the evidence that we have collected which shows that DIY abortions are harmful and dangerous for women.
Abortion pills through the post is a system that needs to be stopped immediately and a thorough investigation needs to occur around the legality and practices of the two major abortion providers in the UK.
At a hearing in July, Michael Phillips, representing CC, told three senior judges that the change in rules:
Is one of the most significant amendments in the last 50 years of abortion law.
In dismissing the appeal, Lady Justice Nicola Davies said the decision was within the scope of the 1967 AbortionAct and its purpose was to “protect women’s health”.
Sitting with Lady Justice King and Lord Justice Phillips, the judge said the legislation enables the Health Secretary to “react to changes in medical science” and allow terminations in other settings.
That is exactly what happened in 2020, a decision was made in the context of a public health emergency arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.
The judge said there was evidence from health professionals that vulnerable women were turning to online providers outside the regulated healthcare system:
Thereby breaking the law and losing the safeguarding and support inherent in the process provided by regulated services. The purpose of the 2020 approval was to address a specific and acute medical need, in the context of a public health emergency, so as to ensure the continuance of the protection of the health of women in the context of the 1967 Act.
Hat tip: Angela_K