Peaceful protests result in alleged “harassment” complaints

The Abortion Supervisory Committee has finally revealed the examples of alleged “harassment” they complained about in their 2012 and 2013 annual reports.

Just to recap for readers, the ASC complained that clinic staff, pre-abortive women and certifying consultants were “harassed” by anti-abortion activists.

The complaints were picked up by the news media, generating negative publicity.

Both Ken Orr of Right to Life and myself as VFL national president wrote to the ASC expressing our concern and requesting evidence.

The ASC refused to give any details whatsoever and so both Right to Life and Voice for Life made a formal complaint to the Ombudsman under the Official Information Act.

The Ombudsman responded that due to lack of staff and the number of investigations, the enquiry could take some time. However, they did contact the ASC and on 6th August the ASC responded with a “partial release of the information”.

This information had been “conveyed to the Committee verbally during its visits to licensed institutions and whilst talking with managers and clinicians”.

In summary the “harassment” has been small groups of people standing outside clinics with banners, handing out objects such as rosaries, rubber models and literature.

That’s right, legitimate peaceful protest outside clinics in public space on the day abortions are performed is called harassment. The anti-abortionists yelling verbal insults are like the Himalayan Yeti, they are rumoured to be out there but no one can find them.

If readers know of any incidents, please contact Voice for Life.

~ Bernard Moran, Voice for Life National President


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