Home use of abortion pills in England announced
Published 23 August 2018
Today we’re celebrating huge win with activist and member Claudia Craig following the announcement by Matt Hancock, Minister for Health and Social Care, that women in England will be permitted to take the abortion pill at home.
The decision comes five months after we launched our #HomeUse campaign as part of our core party objective to decriminalise abortion. The campaign highlighted the experiences of women like Claudia who had been forced to travel after taking abortion pills by asking activists to share a film and sign an open letter from Claudia to the Minister for Health calling for action on the issue.
Claudia’s open letter to the Health Minister was signed by thousands and reached more than two million on social media, condemning the pain and distress that she and other women experienced as a result of outdated legislation that insists they attend a hospital to take the pill - which can result in women beginning to miscarry on their journey home.
Women’s Equality Party activist, Claudia Craig said:
“I am over the moon that my campaign with the Women’s Equality Party has succeeded in bringing about this vital change for women in England. I’m so relieved that our voices have finally been heard, and that experiences like mine will be a thing of the past for women in England.”
''Telling my story was one of the hardest and scariest things that I’ve ever had to do. But seeing today’s result and knowing it's actually made a change has made it all worthwhile. It has also made me even more determined to fight for every woman in the UK, and especially women in Northern Ireland. Women’s reproductive rights are human rights, and should never be up for debate.”
Sophie Walker, Leader of the Women’s Equality Party said:
“This is a great victory for this party’s grassroots campaigners determined to overturn old-fashioned abortion laws that treat women with distrust and disrespect. It is imperative now that Theresa May step in to ensure that women in Northern Ireland - the only part of the UK where women have no reproductive rights at all - also have access to legal and safe abortions and may take the abortion pill at home. Her denial of these rights to women whom as Prime Minister she represents is a dreadful injustice.
“I will be meeting abortion rights campaigners from the UK and Ireland, including those who successfully overturned the Republic of Ireland’s eighth amendment, at the Women’s Equality Party conference in two weeks to discuss next steps. WE will be pushing hard to now move abortion into our healthcare system entirely and do away with involvement of the criminal justice system, which currently condemns women to a prison sentence if they do not get approval for an abortion from two doctors. Decriminalisation is the only way to ensure that women have control over their own bodies, and having control over their own bodies is the only way that women can ever be equal.”