Many people in NI would welcome PM re-stating her view that abortion is devolved issue

With the prime minister in Northern Ireland and delivering a major speech today in respect to Brexit, I understand she will also meet with political leaders to explore options for getting the assembly up and running.

Friday, 20th July 2018, 1:23 am
Updated Friday, 20th July 2018, 9:38 am
Abortion is the responsibility of the NI Assembly, the prime minister has said

Clearly this is an absolute priority. Devolution means key competencies and responsibilities lie with elected representatives here and many across the province would welcome a re-established assembly.

While she is in Northern Ireland, it is also a great opportunity for her to also address the fears of many people about abortion law changes being imposed on us from Westminster.

Ever since the referendum in the south of Ireland, it is clear there are those who will stop at nothing to engineer more liberal abortion laws in Northern Ireland.

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Across at Westminster, a small minority of MPs are currently campaigning for liberalisation, despite the fact abortion is devolved to the assembly.

Yet these MPs do not speak for everyone.

Only a few days ago, a seven-strong, cross-community group of Northern Ireland women went to Westminster and addressed MPs and peers about why NI’s current abortion law should not be undermined or changed.

So far, the prime minister has stuck to the line that abortion is the responsibility of the NI Assembly.

While she is here, I’m sure many people would welcome her publicly re-state her commitment to that position.

Our current abortion law saves lives and it’s not up to MPs at Westminster to try and change it.

Tim Martin, CARE in NI Director, Belfast