Old news I know, but I’ve come across Conservative Home talking about abortion. In an online survey, Conservative Home asked their readers if they agreed with this statement:
“Women considering an abortion should be guaranteed access to independent information and advice from someone who has no vested financial interest in the outcome of their decision.”
As it stands, I would not agree with that statement. I have concerns about independent advice. As well-meaning as an organisation might be, I doubt that anyone working in this sector (on either side) would be able to be truly independent. Organisations which offer to provide advice would have views. Individuals working for these organisations would have personal opinions, and this is not the sort of thing about which it is possible to be completely objective. In order to agree with Conservative Home’s statement, I would suggest two amendments.
Firstly, we should add “or moral or ideological” after “financial”. Beliefs are, at least for me, just as important as money. (Also, charities which receive donations for persuading women not to have abortions have just as vested a financial interest as organisations providing abortions.)
Secondly, replace “someone” with “a choice of individuals or organisations (of whom they can make more than one choice or none)”. If there is no one who is truly independent, then the least we can do is to ensure that women can see more than one person if they wish. Oh, and take out the word “independent”.
I would say this: women considering an abortion should be guaranteed access to information and advice from a choice of individuals or organisations (of whom they can make more than one choice or none) which have no vested financial, moral or ideological interest in the outcome of their decision.