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Devolving abortion rights to Scottish Parliament

(42 Posts)
stargirl1701 Sun 05-Jul-15 20:35:10

I read this today in The Scotland on Sunday. I find it very worrying. We could end up replicating what happens in NI.

stargirl1701 Sun 05-Jul-15 20:35:24

m.scotsman.com/news/health/rights-at-risk-if-holyrood-given-abortion-powers-1-3821880

HirplesWithHaggis Sun 05-Jul-15 20:48:27

Well, we could end up with a situation like N Ireland, though I very much doubt it. Or we could end up in a situation where abortions are very much easier to obtain than they are atm, requiring the consent of two doctors - maybe walk-in clinics, or early abortion pills available free via pharmacies. Who knows?

HirplesWithHaggis Sun 05-Jul-15 20:49:50

We might even end up with the radfem position of abortion to term.

LassUnparalleled Sun 05-Jul-15 20:55:56

Depends how much the SNP want to buy the working class Catholic vote which was traditionally Labour.

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Sun 05-Jul-15 20:56:23

I have no feel for what the feeling is on abortion in Scotland, whether it differs from England, I know there are religious issues in parts, whether this means that people who are anti-abortion / or not have more sway / or not, I have no idea.

I find it odd and concerning that anyone would seek to devolve this single health issue. Unless all other health concerns eg euthanasia, mental health related law, and so forth is already devolved and only abortion is not? And reading the link the move is being put forward by 3 anti-abortion people. So they are clearly wanting the right in Scottish Parliament to reduce / remove existing rights. Whether they would get very far with that in reality - like I say I have no feel for it. In England though whenever reducing term for eg is mooted there is a lot of support so I wouldn't be confident.

Overall and reading the article I think this sounds worrying. Although don't know enough about it to say anything definitive.

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Sun 05-Jul-15 20:59:52

BTL is mainly all in favour of banning abortion so no surprise there!

Someone cites something called EDEL as if it's something everyone should know about which says that only MSPs who are parents should be allowed to vote on this confused

Some people seem to think pro-choice = compulsory abortion. See also the woman in the US pregnant with twins who heads a prochoice movement, which has totally flummoxed the anti-abortion types!

HirplesWithHaggis Sun 05-Jul-15 21:01:36

The Scottish Parliament did recently have a vote on Assisted Suicide, so that is a devolved issue. I don't know what you mean by "mental health related law" but our legal system is different.

The Amendment won't pass anyway, none of the rest of them have, so this is just the (pro Unionist, anti SNP) Scotsman having a wee scare story.

Ubik1 Sun 05-Jul-15 21:03:32

I don't think much would change at all.

I Certainly don't think scotland would make if more difficult for women to obtain an abortion. There really doesn't seem to be much appetite fir that here - apart from the lunatic fringes.

redbinneo Sun 05-Jul-15 21:21:48

Hirples - why does everything have to be about the Union?

HirplesWithHaggis Sun 05-Jul-15 21:34:25

We're talking about whether abortion should become a devolved issue; how can that not be about the Union? confused

redbinneo Sun 05-Jul-15 21:38:51

The point is Hirples is that we're talking about human life, you are talking about the Union.
Do you get the difference dear?

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Sun 05-Jul-15 21:42:21

Mental Health law around being sectioned I was thinking of, I was trying to think of areas of healthcare where there was a crossover with legislation IYSWIM.

As healthcare is run separately I guess they need to unpick any laws related which are in force in order to devolve them IYSWIM.

So the question is whether there are some items that should remain UK-wide. As abortion law isn't already UK-wide (NI) I don't know there is much argument for saying the Scots should remain bound by the existing laws.

That's what I would think anyway.

HirplesWithHaggis Sun 05-Jul-15 21:50:02

Did you mean to be so rude, redbinneo? hmm

It's an interesting question, Whirlpool. Health is a devolved matter and our legal system has always been different, why should this one health issue be reserved?

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Sun 05-Jul-15 21:54:38

God those comments!

I find this difficult. As a pp said, devolution doesn't automatically means the law would change for the worst (ignoring the comments, obvs). But if Scots law on abortions was improved, that would disadvantage English women...

That said, the Catholic church's voice is stronger in Scotland than in England and the ppl proposing the amendment obviously aren't doing it to make a abortion legal to full term, are they...

On the fence. But any difference is going to disadvantage someone.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Sun 05-Jul-15 21:56:31

For the avoidance of doubt, comments = comments on the linked article, not comments on this thread!

Ubik1 Sun 05-Jul-15 21:58:37

Why would a change to abortion law in Scotland, disadvantage English women?

Scotland already has a seperate NHS and legal system.

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Sun 05-Jul-15 22:11:00

Hirples, well that's what I don't know, whether it is this one health issue. Do you know? For eg the law around sectioning under the mental health act, are they devolved? It's the only other thing I can think of, off the top of my head but I expect there's more.

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Sun 05-Jul-15 22:13:52

Ubik because if the Scots had a more relaxed approach then that would, well disadvantage English women isn't quite the right word, their position wouldn't change, but they would be at a disadvantage compared to Scottish women, same as NI women are at a disadvantage compared to rest of UK at the moment.

I suppose that is another point. Say there was a different law in each place. How would women be stopped from travelling? At the moment in NI and Ireland as well when women come here they turn a blind eye, although it is illegal what they are doing. How would that work if England and Scotland were different and women wanted (needed) to travel for abortion?

HirplesWithHaggis Sun 05-Jul-15 22:19:55

www.gov.scot/Publications/2004/01/18753/31686 We have our own laws about sectioning, it seems. (The things you never think of!) So, it seems abortion law is the only health issue reserved. (Dental and eye health are also devolved)

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Sun 05-Jul-15 22:21:16

You mean abortion is the only thing not devolved, or the only thing on the list of 2 things that I could think of off the top of my head?

HirplesWithHaggis Sun 05-Jul-15 22:26:18

I think abortion is the only health issue not devolved. I can't think of any other, but I'm happy to be corrected if someone else knows better.

Ubik1 Sun 05-Jul-15 22:27:31

Women are not to need to travel fur abortion from Scotland confused

You mean that women residing on England may travel to scotland fir abortion if it relaxed its laws? Im sure both nhs's would work it out - there are already reciprocal agreements for all sorts of events.

Ubik1 Sun 05-Jul-15 22:28:59

Sorry 'women will not need to travel from scotland for abortion..'

ReallyTired Sun 05-Jul-15 22:34:05

Is there any appetite for changing abortion rules in Scotland? Are scots unhappy with the present rules?

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