Private Abortion Clinics In UK Can Advertise On TV

January 22 marks the 39th anniversary of the passage of Roe v. Wade. And what is the legacy of that bill?

In the United States, the war on women means that states enacted twice as many anti-choice measures in 2011 as they did in 2010, and that 225 of the 435 law-makers in the House of Representatives voted for every anti-choice measure brought before them in 2011.

Women’s Rights Doing Better In UK Than In US?

Fortunately, the picture in the UK is brighter than this.

From The Washington Post:

Britain’s broadcast advertising body has given the go-ahead for private abortion clinics to advertise their services on television, angering those who say that the move desensitizes the public to the practice.

The Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice said late Friday there was no justification for barring private clinics that offer post-pregnancy services, including abortions, from advertising on television. Nonprofit post-pregnancy services are already allowed to advertise on television, and their for-profit counterparts are allowed to advertise in all other media.

The organization’s spokesman, Matt Wilson, said that “there is not going to be some sort of free-for-all saying: ‘Come to us to get an abortion.’ They are not there to promote abortion, they have to promote an array of services.”

The new rules will go into effect on April 30.

Some Conservative Opposition

Of course, not everyone thinks this is such a great idea. Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt is said to be very unhappy about the decision, but he has no authority to change it. Conservative Member of Parliament Nadine Dorries, who is campaigning to change the law so that women must be referred for independent counselling before a termination, had this to say:

From The Daily Mail:

‘What this is actually going to do is desensitise what abortion is and the seriousness of it, and making it sounds like it’s as easy as having your lunch.

‘That may be great for articulate, well-educated women who know exactly what they want, but the more vulnerable woman who is in emotional turmoil is going to be badly damaged.

‘Broadcasters will be making profit through advertising revenue off the back of a service which ends life. It’s appalling.’

British Law Allows Abortion Up To 24th Week

British law allows abortion up to the 24th week of pregnancy, so long as two doctors agree that the procedure would cause less harm to a woman’s physical or mental health than carrying the fetus to term. There is no time limit in cases which pose a serious risk to the life of the mother.

The reality of getting two doctors to agree to sign that letter can be tricky, and inevitably takes precious time, but still, abortion is legally available in the UK as part of the National Health Service.

Meanwhile, in the U.S., we are fighting to hold on to Roe v. Wade.

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Photo Credit: Louisefeminista


Eternal Gardener
Eternal Gardener6 years ago


Annmari Lundin
Annmari Lundin6 years ago

In Russia and South Africa, there are lockers for mothers to put their infants in if they feel they are unable to care for their children. The infants are taken care of and placed in orphanages. Is this going to be a common pratice in the US too, when the anti-choice maffia gets their will through? Or are we going to follow the (Western) European way and actually allow women to make their own choices because us women do have brains!

"Conservative Member of Parliament Nadine Dorries...That may be great for articulate, well-educated women who know exactly what they want, but the more vulnerable woman who is in emotional turmoil is going to be badly damaged."

Articulate, well-educated women can watch ads for abortion clinics because they have a brain, but poor, uneducated women will be confused and emotionally damaged. Fascism, anyone?

Sian R.
Sian R6 years ago

As Kathleen T says, “You can't judge anyone unless you've walked in their shoes,”

I had an abortion more than 30 years ago. Everyone at the clinic I went to was there for a ‘good’ reason, but one woman surpised us all: she had been an active campaigner AGAINST abortion until, at 45, she found herself pregnant and unable to cope with another child. We asked her, would she now campaign FOR abortion rights. She said “I believe I will.”

Incidentally, I’ve never suffered any regrets at all. It would not have been the right thing to bring into this world a child I had no ability at that time to care for.

Sue H.
.6 years ago

Common sense reigns in the UK. Yayyy!!

Sarah H.
Sarah H6 years ago

"Unborn victims". Well they WILL be victims when they are born to someone who doesn't want them and cannot look after them properly. Is it better to ruin someone's life when they are a few cells, or when they are a damaged, ill-treated child?
Abortion is not all that common in the UK as single mothers are given a lot of welfare support. The type of women who have abortions are those who really could not cope with a child at that time (either physically, or mentally), or those that are best off not having children anyway.

Leia P.
Leia P.6 years ago

great to see

Kristina C.
Kristina C6 years ago

I don't believe that there is anything wrong with advertising medical services - I am sure it is done tasteful.

Marc B.
Marc B6 years ago

Not everything that is allowed should be advertised. Prostitution for example is legal in Germany, but I dont want so see TV-ads.

I think it depends how the ads are made. If they are just information, where to go with the problem (allthough I think for the ordinary woman it are a few phonecalls to find out where to go) or does it praise abortion as a "normal" way of birth control. Will the next step be slogans like:

"Come to us, after two abortions, you'll get the third for free"
"Abort with us and earn a free Plasma TV"

Ness watson
Inez w6 years ago

Steve R: You said "If the Brits want to kill themselves off because their little island is getting too small and they've let too many Pakistanis in there - have at it"

Do you mind not making stupid and racist sweeping statements about the country i was born and live in thanks!
That is a stupid statement. We are proud of being multi cultural and it's idiots like you making stupidly racist statements that make the world a hard place to live.

We do allow same sex marriages as well! LIVE AND LET LIVE!

Tom Edgar
Tom Edgar6 years ago

When I was a young man, that's more than the average lifespan ago, the U S A was the nation to which one looked for intelligent progress, advancement and emancipation in all things.

Today the U S A is being left behind in virtually every area of social advancement. I would say more than being left behind, it is actually regressing towards a medieval mediocre mentality more akin to the less enlightened Islamic States .

Extreme Islamic thinking, invariably dictated by male leaders in their communities bears a strong identity with similar postulations delivered by Evangelical Christians of the American Bible Belt..

Until women are allowed to control those aspects of life peculiar to women then there is no true democracy, not that such a state actually exists anywhere on this planet.