Bpas boss tells Loose Women: Sex-selective abortion should be allowed, and up to birth
16 August 2017
The panellists on Loose Women were left shocked yesterday when Ann Furedi, head of the UK’s largest abortion provider, said that the 24 week limit on abortion should be scrapped, and that it was “always down to the woman” if she wanted to abort her baby because it was the wrong gender.
Panellist Gloria Hunniford interrupted Ms Furedi almost instantly, pointing out that promoting abortion as a form of family planning is "sending out a message to young people that it doesn't matter if you get pregnant, as you can have an abortion", an idea she branded "shocking".
Abortion up to birth
All of the Loose Women were visibly uncomfortable with the suggestion that abortion should be allowed up to birth, which would happen if abortion were to be decriminalised. Gloria Hunniford spoke about her step-granddaughter, who despite being born at just over 24 weeks, and given a poor prognosis, is now "a strapping young woman, and a nurse". "You're never going to persuade me that a baby in that 24-25 week period isn't a lovely little person", she concluded.
...and to target baby girls
Actress Denise Van Outen then challenged Ms Furedi on whether abortion was acceptable on the grounds of gender - and was visibly upset with the answer that it's "always down to the woman".
Should bpas get taxpayer funding?
In light of the comments, campaigners have called for an end to NHS funding of the organisation. Alithea Williams, a spokeswoman for the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, said: “The NHS funds the vast majority of the more than 60,000 abortions that bpas performs every year. Is it really appropriate for taxpayers’ money to be going to an organisation that thinks babies can be killed just for being the wrong gender? The views Ann Furedi expounds are horrific, and what’s more, completely out of step with public opinion – a recent poll found that 99% of people oppose any increasing of the abortion limit. Extending it to birth is something that the vast majority of the public, quite rightly, find abhorrent.”
“The Department of Health needs to have a serious look at the organisation it is giving so much money to,” she continued. “Not only does it campaign publicly to extend abortion far beyond the legal limit, it has shown an appalling lack of care for women. A recent report by the Care Quality Commission of a bpas clinic in Merseyside highlighted a catalogue of safety issues, including 11 women being transferred to hospital in a three year period.”
Notes to editors:
- Monday’s episode of Loose Women
- CQC report into bpas Merseyside
- The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children
Alithea Williams can be contacted on:
Phone: (0)20 7820 3121