Bell Ribeiro-Addy MP visits MSI South London abortion clinic in the face of anti-choice activity
London, 16th November 2022
Local MP Bell Ribeiro-Addy visited MSI Reproductive Choices UK’s abortion clinic on Brixton Hill to discuss rising anti-abortion activity in the UK and express her support for the service.
The MP, who grew up in the local area where the clinic in located, spoke with frontline team members at the leading abortion provider about the rise in anti-abortion activity outside UK abortion clinics since the repeal of Roe v Wade in the United States, and the impact that anti-choice groups are having on those accessing care, especially vulnerable women.
The MSI Reproductive Choices clinic in Brixton has seen a steady presence outside its gates from anti-abortion groups. In other parts of the country, local authorities have used Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPOs) to create “buffer zones” around abortion clinics.
The team also discussed access to contraception in the local area, abortion funding, and workforce pressures, which are felt particularly acutely in Brixton.
Abortion clinic buffer zones
On Tuesday 18th October, the House of Commons voted in favour of an amendment which, once it passes the House of Lords, would introduce buffer zones (or ‘safe access zones’) to protect abortion clinics, hospitals and other premises from anti-abortion groups by requiring them to stand at least 150 metres away.
The amendment (as part of the Public Order Bill) is making its way through the House of Lords and has already passed second reading.
Angela Jones, Regional General Manager said: “Abortion is essential healthcare, and we are grateful for the tremendous support we see for our work from the local community.
“It was great to welcome Bell Ribeiro-Addy to the clinic. As the national buffer zone legislation progresses through Parliament, we really appreciate her support in the face of the small but vocal anti-abortion minority who turn up outside the clinic every week with the clear intention of shaming people for accessing abortion.”
Bell Ribeiro-Addy MP said: “It was great to visit the clinic to see first-hand the important work that staff are doing to support women in our area in the face of staffing challenges, funding shortages and targeted anti-abortion protests.
“I am particularly concerned by the escalation of anti-abortion activity around the clinic in recent months. Women should be able to access these essential services without having to run a gauntlet of intimidation and harassment. That’s why I’ve written to Lambeth Council urging them to implement a buffer zone around the clinic.”
Notes to Editors
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To read our statement on the news that the House of Commons voted in favour of abortion clinic buffer zones in England and Wales, click here: MSI UK comment on UK Government vote in favour of abortion clinic buffer zones
To read more about abortion clinic buffer zones and why we have been campaigning for national legislation, read our blogs at the links below: