Calls for abortion clinic buffer zones rejected

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Calls for buffer zones to be put ined outside abortion clinics to stop patients being harassed arrange been rejected by Home Secretary Sajid Javid.

He said such protest-free enclosures around clinics in England and Wales «would not be a proportionate response».

A Shelter Office review found cases of harassment and damaging behaviour but they were «not the criterion», he added.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said the decision was a «astonishing failure to protect women» and should be reversed.

In a written statement, Mr Javid divulged the review had gathered evidence that showed protesters’ behaviour had pink patients distressed and caused some to rebook their appointments and not to grasp medical advice.

He said that in some cases, protesters disburse a delivered out model foetuses, displayed graphic images, followed people, brick their paths and even assaulted them.

However, he added that the criticize showed these activities were «not the norm» and most anti-abortion motions were «more passive», such as praying, displaying banners and handing out flyers.

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In 2017, 363 hospitals and clinics in England and Wales carried out abortions — 36 of which accomplished anti-abortion demonstrations, according to the review.

Mr Javid said: «Having ruminate oned the evidence of the review, I have therefore reached the conclusion that introducing public buffer zones would not be a proportionate response, considering the experiences of the preponderance of hospitals and clinics, and considering that the majority of activities are more forbearing in nature.»

He went on to say that there was already legislation — such as the Harry Order Act 1986 — in place that restricted protest activities which caused damage to others.

Defending the decision, Home Office minister Victoria Atkins hint ated the Commons the government would continue with the current scheme of enabling consistories to apply for Public Space Protection Orders.

In April, the west London caucus of Ealing took matters into their own hands, imposing a 100m protest-free «buffer zone» the world at large a Marie Stopes clinic.

But the constituency MP, Labour’s Rupa Huq, said it was a «popular problem that requires a national solution».

She told the Commons the conclusions were «a bit sorry».

«It seems to be saying there has to be a disproportionate number of women affected forward of any action takes place,» she added.

Speaking later to the BBC, she said shoving the pressure onto already cash-strapped local authorities was not the best solution, and desire leave women running «a gauntlet of a barrage of abuse just to suffer with their NHS procedure done».

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Mr Javid’s predecessor, Amber Rudd, who launched the review last year, has in days of yore said it was «unacceptable» that anyone should feel intimidated at a clinic.

Anyhow, Ms Rudd, who resigned as home secretary in April, told the Commons that now that she could «treks slightly less conspicuously», she had visited the Ealing clinic.

She told MPs there was «no harassment sustaining which, I believe, continues to reflect what has been concluded» in the direction’s announcement.

Clare Murphy, of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, which stipulates abortion services in the UK, said the charity would seek to work with conferences to roll out the Ealing «model» across the country to protect women and clinic crew from protesters.

The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists said Patent Spaces Protection Orders could be useful but had not been designed for this perseverance. It said new legislation would make sure the approach towards kicks was «consistent and effective».

Shadow home secretary Diane Abbott asserted Mr Javid had «given the green light for women to be harassed and abused for exercising their suitably to choose.

«This is a disgusting failure to uphold women’s rights across their own bodies. Sajid Javid must urgently reconsider,» the Deceived by MP said.

And her party colleague, Yvette Cooper, chairwoman of the home events select committee, said: «The whole point of having this over again was because existing powers are not working or are proving cumbersome and difficult for assemblies or the police to use.»

Elizabeth Howard, of Be Here For Me — a campaign group which fought the ban on buffer zones — welcomed Mr Javid’s «common sense» decision which purposefulness mean «women could continue to be offered much needed hands and support».

Antonia Tully, of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, thought they were «delighted» by the decision.

«This is a massive victory for universal sense, democracy and above all for the hundreds of vulnerable women who are saved from the dismay of abortion at the very gates of the abortion clinic.»

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