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rights, freedoms and repression |
Tuesday August 21, 2007 10:18 by Niav - Choice Ireland (personal capacity)
Choice Ireland staged a protest outside the Women’s Resource Centre, a rogue pregnancy counselling agency on 50 Upper Dorset Street on Saturday, 18th August 2007. Choice Ireland is a diverse group of Pro-Choice activists campaigning for free, safe and legal abortion services in Ireland.
Rogue crisis pregnancy counselling agencies advertise themselves as providers of legitimate pregnancy counselling services but they are known to use manipulative tactics, provide misleading information and intimidate women. The sole purpose of these agencies is to stop women from travelling outside the State to terminate a pregnancy. When Choice Ireland activists attended this agency, they were told that having an abortion would increase their risk of developing breast cancer, becoming an alcoholic and abusing children. These are blatant lies designed to scare vulnerable women in a crisis pregnancy situation.
Choice Ireland Founding Documents · Report of previous protest outside this agency
I arrived at Dorset Street at quarter to 12 and was surprised to meet four bemused garda with crash barriers who didn’t seem to know why they were there. A male employee of the WRC was on a step ladder erecting a sign to cover the name of the clinic. A larger sign to cover the name of the clinic was not erected. This sign had been erected at previous pickets and reads “Saving women from abortion, profiteers, cancer & suicide”. The WRC is not saving any women. In fact, they are putting women’s lives at risk by giving them false medical information.
Approximately 30 pro choice activists attended the demonstration at noon today. Activists held placards reading “This agency gives false medical information”, “Safe and legal abortion now” and “Pro-Woman, Pro-Child, Pro-Choice” and held a banner reading “This ‘clinic’ lies to women”. Despite the rain, we were happy to draw attention to the existence of this agency. Choice Ireland’s call for regulation of crisis pregnancy agencies has received much support and media coverage over the last few days. This is not the first time we have picketed this agency. Pickets have taken place on 8th March, 24th March and 21st April this year. For a detail history of this agency see http://www.indymedia.ie/article/81414 for more background information.
Two employees of the WRC spent the duration of the picket telling us the truth about abortion. Their ‘truth’ however is not actually based on facts and research but is influenced by their staunch religious beliefs. By telling the truth about abortion, they are doing women a favour, the male employee argued. If you want to do women in Ireland a favour, then trust them to decide their fate.
The people behind these agencies are anti sex, anti contraception, anti choice and anti women. If you have attended a rogue agency and have first hand experience of the ‘counselling’ you received please contact Choice Ireland If you know of a rogue agency operating in your locality please tell us about it. The Majella Life and Education Crisis Pregnancy Centre is based in Limerick. It is a rogue agency and was established by Human Life International Ireland.
With regard to rogue pregnancy counselling agencies Choice Ireland believe that the Government should bring forward statutory regulation for all pregnancy advice and counselling services, prescribing minimum codes of practice and standards, to ensure that they do not impart misleading and incorrect advice. In addition, it should be mandatory for all services to register with a recognised authority. In addition, it should be mandatory for all services to register with a recognised authority. Under the terms of the 1995 Regulation of Information Act, non-directive agencies may only provide information on a face to face basis and there is an obligation to provide information on all options. Pregnancy advice and counselling services which do not provide abortion information are not restricted in any way. In addition, the government should introduce legislation to extend the protection available in trade and business situations in respect of trade description in advertising and false and misleading statements regarding services to those which do not require payment or profit such as pregnancy counselling services. This would outlaw the deceptive practices currently employed by rogue crisis pregnancy counselling agencies to mislead and manipulate women through the advertising and promotion of their services.
If you are in a crisis pregnancy situation, you should consider all your options – parenting, adoption and abortion. If you would like to talk to a counsellor about your crisis pregnancy you can contact the Irish Family Planning Association on 1850 49 50 51 and make an appointment.
If you would like more information or to get involved you can visit our website http://www.choiceireland.blogspot.com You can contact us on email@example.com Choice Ireland meetings take place every Thursday evening at 7 pm in Seomra Spraoi, 4 Mary’s Abbey.