Stop Endangering Women by Forcing Them to Carry Non-Viable Pregnancies

Target: William Hay, Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly

Goal: Allow women to access safe and legal abortions, especially in the case of non-viable pregnancies.

Northern Ireland has one of the most restrictive stances on abortion in Europe, with much of its legislation based on an outdated 1861 act. These restrictions have been highlighted in public media lately thanks to the recent deal British Prime Minister Theresa May has made with the ultra-conservative Democratic Unionist party (DUP) in Northern Ireland to ensure she can remain in power. The DUP has taken a hard-line stance on abortion and other issues related to women’s reproductive health ever since its formation, and it is currently the dominant political party in Northern Ireland.

One of the most heartbreaking consequences of Northern Ireland’s strict opposition to abortion rights has been the numerous reports of women who have been forced to carry non-viable fetuses to term. In cases where a fetus has died in utero, there have been instances where women were still unable to receive necessary treatment to expel fetal remains, putting these women at life-threatening risk of infection. In other instances, women have been jailed for obtaining medication online to induce miscarriages.

Forcing a woman to carry an unborn child to term who will almost certainly die within a few short excruciating hours, or one that will surely be stillborn, is cruel and can have deadly consequences. Sign this petition to demand that the head speaker of the DUP challenge his party’s stance on this issue so no more women have to suffer this torturous fate.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Speaker Hay,

As you are likely aware, many women in Northern Ireland have suffered dire consequences for your country’s restrictive measures on abortion. Some women have died due to complications caused by non-viable pregnancies, while others have been imprisoned for trying to end their pregnancies at home. In all of these instances, the bodily autonomy of women has been violated, placing a fetus’s alleged well being over a mother’s health and personal rights.

There is no reason why a woman should be forced to carry a baby to term which has no chance of survival, nor should women face time in jail for trying to end these pregnancies. I demand that you challenge your party’s restrictive stance on women’s reproductive health and strive to join the majority of the developed world on this issue.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: William Murphy

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One Comment

  1. Not signing this petition.
    There are 3 separate issues here that I can see. One is where the fetus – baby – has already died in the womb. The second is where the baby has been found to have a health disorder which will inevitably or almost inevitably result in his or her death. And the third is where the baby is normal and healthy.
    In the first instance, where the baby has already died, if the mother’s health is at risk, I think she should have the baby removed. It’s not killing. Why the DUP would object to this is baffling to me.
    In the second instance I do not support killing the baby just because he or she will probably die anyway. Do we come and brutally kill a relative who is dying on their deathbed? Or do we alleviate their pain and let them go quietly? I ask these questions because when a baby is aborted, it is a brutal, violent death for them – not peaceful, not merciful.
    In the third instance of a normal baby, I am against killing them period. Whether it be the mother doing it herself with medications or a doctor doing it.

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203 Signatures

  • Sandra Dutcher
  • Allison Johnson
  • chris Rodriguez
  • Lisa La Rosa
  • Helen LeBrecht
  • Sue Mohr
  • Amy Sullivan
  • Martin Hoffman
  • Kjersti Gunnberg
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