‘I won’t drop my pro-life views’ says NI health minister

Northern Ireland’s new health minister has said he will not abandon his principles when making policies, and will stand for the rights of the unborn child, in an interview for the BBC.

Wells said he is, “not one of these people that leaves my personal views at the door of the Assembly”, and believes his pro-life and pro-marriage stances are “best for society”.

He said: “I will always stand by the rights of the unborn child, I will not accept the introduction of the 1967 Act into Northern Ireland.”

Abortion on demand

He commented that in England, this has led to “abortion on demand” and the deaths of millions of unborn children.

“The experts have told me there’s 91,000 people in Northern Ireland who are alive today who wouldn’t be if we had the ’67 Act here”, Wells said,

“I don’t believe we’re lagging behind the times, I believe we’re more progressive in terms of protecting the life of the unborn child”, he added.

Private clinics

In 2012, a Marie Stopes abortion clinic opened in Belfast, despite abortion being illegal except if the mother’s life is in danger.

Wells is trying to change the Criminal Justice Bill in order to prevent abortions taking place in private clinics.

He told the BBC that protecting the unborn child and supporting the concept of marriage “are actually best for society as well as my own personal views so I don’t think there’s any ultimate conflict between the two”.

Principles

“I think you have to do what’s best for everyone but not abandon principles which I and so many other people in this Province hold dear”, Wells commented.

Wells, from the Democratic Unionist Party, was appointed last month as health minister because of a reshuffle.

This week, Northern Ireland’s Department of Justice launched a consultation on weakening abortion law in the Province.

Justice Minister David Ford is asking for views on allowing abortion in cases of fatal foetal abnormality and sexual crime.

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