Abortion is safer than giving birth and is a “normal part of life”, according to Britain’s largest single abortion provider BPAS.
The controversial remarks were made last week by Jennie Bristow, the editor of Reproductive Review, a BPAS publication.
Bristow also claimed it is “inhumane” to ‘deny’ an abortion to a woman who wants one, and that a Parliamentary bid to ban sex-selective abortion is wrong.
Her comments add to BPAS criticism of Fiona Bruce MP’s plans to curb the practice of sex-selective abortion through an amendment to the Serious Crime Bill.
Bristow said, “the language of the amendment should act as a red flag to those who support reproductive choice”.
She then discussed the decisions doctors make on abortion, commenting, “in 2015, a doctor would always be legally justified in authorising an abortion” because today, “abortion is generally safer than childbirth”.
“Denying a termination to a woman who definitively does not want to continue her pregnancy is inhumane”, she said.
She added, “if a woman does not want to be pregnant, forcing her to continue the pregnancy and to give birth is clearly not in the best interests of her physical or mental health”.
“Abortion today is safe, acceptable, and a normal part of life. It would be much better if abortion could be regulated as any other medical procedure.”
The claim that abortion is safer than childbirth was also made in 2011 by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. It faced strong criticism.
Commentator Melanie Phillips said to “imply that having a baby is a dangerous procedure is a disreputable piece of scaremongering”.
She said the implication “amounts to the psychological manipulation of women who are already in a vulnerable state”.
“It is a form of bullying and a gross abuse of medical power”, Phillips added.