Britain's New Health Secretary in Favor of Reducing Abortion Cutoff From 24 to 12 Weeks

Illustration for article titled Britain's New Health Secretary in Favor of Reducing Abortion Cutoff From 24 to 12 Weeks

Although abortion isn't quite a hot button in the UK as it is stateside, it looks like they're following our shitty example across the pond. Back in March, a fervent anti-abortion group filmed women coming out of a London clinic. The BPAS (British Pregnancy Advisory Service) is worried that the increasingly stigmatic opinion of the women's health profession is leading to fewer trained abortion providers.


Now, thanks to newly appointed health secretary Jeremy Hunt, unsurprisingly of England's Conservative Party. After taking his post a few weeks ago, one of Hunt's first decisions is to take down the current abortion deadline of 24 weeks' gestation to 12 weeks, or "just the right point," as far as Hunt is concerned. "It is just my view about that incredibly difficult question –- about the moment we should deem life to start. I don't think the reason I have that view is for religious reasons."

Prime Minister David Cameron admits that he was in favor of cutting down the week limit, but not as severely as 12 weeks. Labor Party spokeswoman Diane Abbott spoke out against the idea, saying "I think women and families across the country will find it staggering that the priority for this government is playing politics with people's lives like this."

'Jeremy Hunt attacked from all sides after abortion comments' [The Guardian UK]
'UK health secretary backs reducing abortion limit to 12 weeks, sparking debate, criticism' [Washington Post]

Photo credit: Karkas/Shutterstock

Update: This article has been edited to correct errors. The original article misstated that Jeremy Hunt had changed the legal limit for abortions from 24 weeks to 12, and that David Cameron supported this change. This is incorrect. The law has not been changed; Jeremy Hunt has only stated his support for reducing the abortion cutoff to 12 weeks. While David Cameron supports a "modest reduction from the current limit of 24 weeks," he does not support reducing the legal limit to as little as 12 weeks. We regret the error.



Alright, so now that everyone is done fact-checking the original article and correcting what needs to be corrected, let's start on the discussion we should be having!! About how all of a sudden highly conservative, right-leaning politicians have been "expressing their views" on the matter as of late, even though this issue was squared away years ago.

Recently enough there was an "expressing of opinions" if you will in Canada concerning the status of when life begins. But as we all know, expressing opinions never leads to policy or laws, so why worry?

The war on women in the States rages on harder and stronger every day it seems, but again, there are facts to be checked and pearls to be clutched. Let's just focus on that instead.