16 Mar 2007

Contraception and Abortion (Parental Information) - Wednesday, 14 March 2007

Angela Wilkinson MP sought:

"That leave be given to bring in a Bill to require practitioners providing contraception or abortion services to a child under the age of 16 to inform his or her parent or guardian; and for connected purposes."

The Noes won by 169 to 87 (majority 82) with 4 tellers, making a turnout of 260.

Opposing the motion Evan Harris MP said:

"The answer, however, is not more ignorance, which is what the hon. Member for Upminster has prescribed: it is more information. "

Actually, it is Dr Harris who is on the side of ignorance - but for parents and guardians - with the medical profession left cheerfully providing contraceptive services and abortions to those under the legal age of consent without let or hindrance.

It is difficult to imagine a recipe more likely to give encouragement to young boys and male adults who wish to coerce underage girls into having sex with them.

"There's no harm in it. You won't get pregnant. Your parents need never know."

The facts are different. As Mrs Wilkinson said:

"The provision of lots of sex information has not worked, so sex information should be replaced with sex education. In education about the real risks involved and the likely outcomes, the advice to under-age girls should be to abstain, to wait, to delay, and to resist, rather than to use contraception and believe that they will not come to any harm. Parents need to be part of that process."

She also said:

"Advice on abortion may be provided and accepted without the parents' knowledge. Just a few weeks ago, I received a letter from a constituent who had been required to leave his place of work, find a chemist and buy a tube of antiseptic cream, go to his son's primary school where the child had grazed his knee, apply the cream and then return to work. Apparently that procedure was too risky to be undertaken without parental involvement. We live in a contrary world that rates the application of cream to a grazed knee, or a visit to the dentist, for which parental consent is also required, as a greater risk than an abortion on a minor."

It is a pity that Mrs Wilkinson won't get a chance to bring in her Bill.

However, for those who are wanting to bring about improvements in social and domestic cohesion in the broadest sense, there are realistic opportunities to insert significant amendments in the:

Statistics and Registration Services Bill

and the

Forced Marriage (Civil Protection) Bill.

Please see earlier posts.

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