Abortion: let’s get off the back foot

dont turn back the clock.jpgAs Jess posted last month, Nadine Dorries and Frank Field have begun making the first attempts since the Coalition Government took office to restrict abortion access. And as Sunny Hundal has covered on Liberal Conspiracy, these attempts have already gained traction with MPs voting to allow proposed girls-only abstinence classes to be considered by Parliament in January.

Readers will no doubt remember that women faced a number of similar attacks to our reproductive rights in 2008, which we covered on the blog. At the time, we organized effectively to resist the attempts to further restrict access to abortion in Britain. But we were on the back foot, defending the limited rights that we have. This time the fight to retain the rights we have is probably going to be even harder.

In addition, we’re still quite far from having the reproductive rights we actually need:

  • We still need two doctors’ permission to get an abortion in Britain
  • Abortion is illegal in Northern Ireland unless it is life threatening (and access is still a problem in those cases)

It’s time for the women’s rights movement in the UK to start pro-actively claiming all our reproductive rights I think – including the right to own our bodies and control what happens to them. What should we do?

Well, Jess and Sunny are organising an open meeting to help us figure this out.

The aim will be to talk about what we can do to step up the response by pro-choice/reproductive justice activists, which backs up, supports and amplifies the work that groups such as Abortion Rights and Education for Choice are already doing.


The meeting will be on Monday 6 June, starting at 6:30pm (get there for 6!).

It will be free to attend.

It will be at a pub in central London.

The details of the location will be emailed to all those who RSVP.

There will be speakers (TBC).

If you would like to come, please RSVP to Jess.

Note: places are very limited because of the size of the venue. Please let us know if you want to come along as soon as you can.

Update: although the meeting is in a pub, no drinking is required (I won’t be!).

Photo of a protesting white woman holding a banner that reads ‘Don’t turn back the clock’ by ge’shmally, shared under a Creative Commons license