Bradshaw welcomes legal challenge on abortion services

Health Paula Bradshaw

South Belfast MLA Paula Bradshaw has welcomed the Human Rights Commission’s challenge to the Northern Ireland Office and the Department of Health for its failure to commission safe and accessible abortion services after they were legalised.

The MLA stated: “The ongoing failure to implement the abortion framework is utterly unacceptable. Abortion is a conscience issue for Alliance but I have long argued this failure breaches the rights and freedoms of women experiencing crisis pregnancies.

“The pandemic has only made this worse because women have had to travel, often unsafely, to access services which are legal in their own jurisdiction.

“It remains utterly unacceptable for the Minister to shirk this issue by pretending the implementation of the law is somehow a cross-cutting issue requiring Executive approval. It categorically is no such thing.

“It should not be necessary for legal action to be taken to ensure services are provided to meet the requirements of the law. I hope this action results in swift change and the delivery of what was promised to women in Northern Ireland after what was already too long a wait.”