Abortion ‘censorship zones’ to be trialled in Scotland

Nicola Sturgeon has announced that she intends to trial censorship zones around abortion clinics in Scotland.

Speaking at a summit on abortion in Edinburgh, the First Minister backed MSP Gillian Mackay’s Bill seeking to create 150m buffer zones around hospitals and abortion centres.

In similar zones in other countries, people have been prevented from handing out pro-life literature, offering prayer, and speaking to women about abortion. Sturgeon acknowledged that such a law in Scotland could be subject to legal challenge.


The First Minister admitted she couldn’t force councils to trial such measures, but the leader of Glasgow City Council has indicated she wishes to introduce them in the city with Government backing. Edinburgh has also expressed interest in being one of the test councils.

Sturgeon said “we live in a democracy and people are free to have different views on abortion”, but added that women should not be able to be informed of these views near abortion clinics.

She is opposed by one of her own MSPs, John Mason, who has said he is “not convinced” there is a problem. Mason pointed out that some women want to know they have a choice not to abort.

He told the BBC that “people who say they are being coerced into abortions and are not being given the pros and cons” need to be listened to.


Last September, Women’s Health Minister Maree Todd told abortion activists that Scotland-wide buffer zones were ‘not on the cards’. But earlier this month, Nicola Sturgeon informed Holyrood she now backed legislating for ‘censorship zones’.

The summit came days after the US Supreme Court overturned its 1973 ruling on Roe v Wade, returning the law on abortion back to the elected representatives in each of the 50 states. The ruling sparked a furious reaction among pro-abortionists.

A Christian pregnancy centre in Colorado, Life Choices, was set on fire and painted with the words: “If abortions aren’t safe, neither are you.” And in Arizona, the police used tear gas on pro-abortion protesters vandalising the state’s Capitol building.

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