Together Gibraltar's Response to GPLM Statement
Following the release of a statement by the Gibraltar Pro-Life Movement, Together Gibraltar feels compelled to clarify the misleading and, frankly, ludicrous suggestion that our party’s position on abortion is a ‘radical’ view, or that it has a ‘lack of respect for human life’.
Together Gibraltar’s stance is far from radical. It is in line with scientific evidence, international research, medical guidelines and human rights law in relation to the viability of the embryo and women’s reproductive rights. What is radical is the current legal position in Gibraltar, which makes it one of the last places in the developed world where abortion continues to be illegal and punishable by life in prison, and the suggestion of GPLM that this should continue to be so.
Together Gibraltar wants to regulate abortion, just as it is regulated in almost every other modern jurisdiction. This is not just because it is the fair thing to do for our women, and because our women deserve to have their rights recognised and be trusted to make the right decisions about their own bodies and their own healthcare. We want to regulate abortion because those who claim to protect the unborn are not saving a single life. Abortion has always happened, and will continue to happen, whether people like it or not. All that the current law ensures is that women in need of an abortion are forced out of their hometown and their healthcare system, into a private clinic in Spain. The current law ensures that when a Gibraltarian woman gets an abortion, she will not receive any counselling before or after the procedure, nor will she receive any after care. She will be attended in a language that is not her own. She will be made to feel that she is doing something shameful, simply because she has exercised her right to choose if, and when, she wants to embark on the life changing journey of motherhood.
The candidates of Together Gibraltar have 39 children, 23 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren between them. This is not a party that is anti-life or anti-children. This is a party that is anti-hypocrisy. The attempts to paint Marlene, of Together Gibraltar, as a party who is "anti-life" are as transparent as they are ridiculous.
The approach favoured by GPLM is a hypocritical ‘not in my backyard’ attitude that, ironically, does nothing to reduce the number of abortions. Together Gibraltar’s approach would, in all likelihood, have the effect of reducing the overall number of abortions through the provision of an effective support system for women who find themselves in that situation. The measures proposed by Together Gibraltar are therefore designed to ensure that abortion is safe and rare. The measures proposed by GPLM simply ensure that abortion is invisible.
Then there's the issue of the legal imperative, which was recognised by the Chief Minister himself before pulling back on the implementation of the act for lack of internal support. This imperative was executed ruthlessly and unequivocally in Northern Ireland. Letters with alternative legal interpretations are of little relevance when you compare them to a clear, solid precedent.
Do not let them confuse you with spin and demagoguery. Together Gibraltar supports legalising abortions because it is fair, necessary, and inevitable. All those with a different view will never be forced to have an abortion, or act against their values, but they should not be awarded the privilege of imposing their views on others.