Friday, 21 May 2010

URGENT: help stop abortion ad by lobbying minister and MPs

Channel 4 will be broadcasting an advertisement by Marie Stopes International, the abortion promoter and provider, on Monday evening at 10.10pm. Please act immediately to help stop the ad, by:
  • contacting Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP, the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. The Secretary of State has the power to stop the ad through his powers relating to Ofcom - please urge him to use that power. The department's email address is (alternatively )  and the department's telephone number is (020) 7211 6000.
  • contact your MP, asking him/her to urge the Secretary of State to stop the ad. You can email your MP via You can also telephone your MP via the parliamentary switchboard on (020) 7219 3000.
Below are some arguments and information you can use when writing to the Secretary of State and to your MP:

  • Allowing abortion to be advertised on TV will lead to more unborn babies being killed and to more women and girls suffering the after-effects of abortion. Abortion ads will trivialise abortion. It is an insult to the hundreds of women hurt by abortion every day. Such ads are offensive and will mislead viewers about the reality of abortion, which is the killing of unborn children.
  • Marie Stopes centres are not advice centres but abortion factories. They fast-track women down a path to abortion, because they have an ideological commitment to abortion. Even if Monday night’s ad doesn’t mention abortion, Marie Stopes is well-known as an abortion provider (cf. their “Abortion” ads on the London Underground.)
  • Marie Stopes may claim to be a non-profit organisation, but they have a financial interest in drumming up demand for abortion. Marie Stopes has a cavalier attitude to obeying legal restrictions regarding abortion, and has been implicated in illegal abortions overseas. Neither Marie Stopes nor any similar organisation should be allowed to advertise the killing of unborn children.
  • Although Marie Stopes claims to be a charity helping women, its huge multi-national revenue means it can afford TV advertising, which is hugely expensive. This creates an unfair playing field, as pro-life groups simply cannot afford any such advertising.
  • The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport has the power to insist that Ofcom controls advertising in this area. We call upon him to intervene immediately. [cf. Communications Act 2003 s.321.
  • Abortion is in English law a criminal offence (Offences Against The Person Act 1861, though not prosecuted if the conditions of the Abortion Act 1967 are met). Advertising of a criminal offence is not permitted.
    European law also prohibits the advertising of restricted (i.e. on prescription) medical procedures, such as abortion. [cf. the Audio-Visual Media Regulations 2010, preamble, 89]
  • The Broadcasting Act 1990 requires that advertising is not offensive or harmful. Abortion is offensive to the countless women damaged by abortion; and lethally harmful to the hundreds of unborn children aborted every day.
  • Last year 29,000 people signed a SPUC-organised paper petition to the prime minister against a proposal to allow abortion agencies to advertise on television and radio. Hundreds of people also wrote submissions to the broadcasting authorities against the proposal.
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