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In defence of women’s right to choose

In the face of the Daily Telegraph's attempt to discredit a number of doctors who provide abortions, we would like to express our support for all those who are willing to provide abortion referrals in the UK and all health professionals who provide safe abortion services.

We represent pro-choice organisations that have been working for women's right to safe abortion for many years. We believe that abortion should be available to every woman who requests it, and that the provision of safe, accessible abortion care is a vital element of healthcare provision.

Some politicians – Nadine Dorries MP, for example – would dearly love to turn the clock back. In her blog on Conservative Home, she referred to doctors not only facing the threat of prosecution but also being struck off the medical register. She even mentioned life imprisonment, which is ludicrous, but still intimidating.

We will stand up for doctors and other health professionals who support and are willing to provide safe abortion services. We applaud their commitment in the face of unwarranted harassment and condemnation. Every poll and public debate shows that most people in Britain are aware of and support the right to use contraception and the right of women to seek abortion. We call on everyone who supports family planning, including safe abortion, to express their appreciation for the health professionals who provide it.

From Voice for Choice, whose members include Professor Wendy Savage, on behalf of Doctors for a Woman's Choice on Abortion