Portsmouth, England, Apr 18, 2018 / 14:24 pm America/Denver (CNA).
After a London borough passed an ordinance earlier this month establishing a buffer zone around a local abortion clinic, Bishop Philip Egan of Portsmouth said he was concerned by the unjust measure.
The Ealing Council, which serves the west London borough, voted April 10 to enforce a Public Space Protection Order, which effectively bans public prayer and counselors who assist women within 100 meters of the Marie Stopes clinic, a leading abortion provider in London which performs around 7,000 abortions annually.
“I am deeply concerned about the imposition of ‘no-prayer zones’ around clinics where abortions take place,” Bishop Egan said April 18.
“To remove from the environment of the abortion clinics alternative voices is to limit freedom of choice. Indeed, research shows that many women have been grateful for the last-minute support they have thereby received,” Egan continued.
The Portsmouth bishop went on to call the ruling “disrespectful to vulnerable women,” who can be gravely harmed by an abortion procedure. He also lamented the removal of peaceful prayer near the abortion clinics, which he called crucial for women considering abortions or who have experienced abortions.