UK Council Bans Pro-Life Vigils outside Abortion Clinic
Country: United Kingdom
Date of incident: April 10, 2018
Category: Government Restrictions
Attack against: Faith / Morals
Area of case: Governmental / Political
A London local council voted unanimously on April 10th to ban pro-life vigils outside a local abortion center that have been taking place without incident for 23 years. The Ealing council voted to use a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) to stop pro-life advocates from praying outside the Ealing Marie Stopes abortion clinic and offering help to women as they enter or exit the building. Pro-lifers must now stay 100 meters away from the abortion center. It will be the first "buffer zone" in the United Kingdom.
PSPOs allow councils to restrict legal activities within a specified area. Critics like the National Council for Civil Liberties say that PSPOs “criminalize non-criminal activity” and are used to limit freedom of speech and of protest.
There has been a pro-life presence outside the Ealing Marie Stopes clinic for over twenty-three years. Clare McCullough of the pro-life Good Counsel Network told LifeSiteNews that pro-life volunteers have been there six days a week since 2013. Her group offers women alternatives to abortion, sometimes housing and feeding women who have no-one else to turn to.
The PSPO ban goes into effect on April 23, 2018.