Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 7th 2016 Contents B26
body & soul
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Thursday, April 7, 2016
A pro-choice campaigner has revealed she used
her personal credit card to buy abortion pills for
women in Northern Ireland to induce terminations.
Despite a 21-year-old woman being convicted on
Monday at Belfast crown court of inducing a miscarriage
after ingesting similar pills, Goretti Horgan from
Alliance For Choice said on Tuesday that she is not
afraid of being investigated by police for helping other
women do the same.
Although a judge imposed a three-month jail sen-
tence on the woman for taking the pills two years ago,
she avoided jail after it was suspended for two years.
Belfast crown court was told the then-19-year-old
obtained the pills because she could not afford to
travel to an English clinic for an abortion. The court
also heard that the woman was arrested after house-
mates informed police that a 10-week old male foetus
had been found in a liner inside the household bin at
a property in Belfast.
But the sentence has enraged pro-choice organi-
sations in Northern Ireland---the only part of the UK
where abortion is illegal except in very exceptional
Campaigners for abortion reform fear the case could
lead to more women being prosecuted for procuring
and/or taking the pills.
In response to the case, Horgan said she made her
credit card available for women to use as many of
them do not want the pills to arrive at their home
"I have been very open about this. Over 200 women
and some men signed an open letter in June saying
again that the law here is irrelevant in the age of the
internet and women being able to bring on early mis-
carriage by taking simple pills," she said.
Horgan estimated that she has helped up to 20
women obtain abortion pills from pro-choice groups
on the internet.
"These pills have been available now for 10 years.
Not only are none of us particularly worried about
this, we have stood outside police stations reminding
police we signed letters giving them our names and
addresses. We want the law sorted on this.
"The law that makes it illegal for women to take
these pills is 155 years old, before the light bulb was
invented," she added. Under the Offences Against the
Person Act 1861, anyone carrying out an abortion in
Northern Ireland, except under extremely limited cir-
cumstances, can be jailed for life.
A number of other women face prosecution over
procuring abortion pills in Northern Ireland including
a mother who is alleged to have obtained the pills for
her under-age daughter who was pregnant. The mother
in this was case was referred to the Police Service of
Northern Ireland after she took her daughter to a local
hospital for treatment. (Guardian UK)
Pro-choice activists at a
rally in Belfast in January
in support of the 21-year-
woman who was this
week convicted of
inducing a miscarriage.
PHOTO: GUARDIAN UK.
The calories in a can of fizzy drink takes a
person of average age and weight about 26 minutes
to walk off.
If more folks realised the actual exercise needed
to work off food calories, they would be more likely
to change their behaviour, argues an expert in the
British Medical Journal (BMJ). She is advocating
labelling all food with the equivalent exercise to
expend its calories.
Shirley Cramer, chief executive at the Royal Society
of Public Health, says giving consumers an imme-
diate link between foods energy content and physical
activity might help to reduce obesity.
She explains that with the big overweight and
obesity problem, "we desperately need innovative
initiatives to change behaviour at population level."
Yet little evidence indicates that the current infor-
mation on food and drink packaging, including
traffic light labelling, actually changes behaviour.
The Royal Society for Public Health has therefore
called for the introduction of "activity equivalent"
Public polling by the society in the UK has shown
that almost half (44 per cent) of people find current
front of pack information confusing, she writes.
And more than half (53 per cent) said that they
would positively change their behaviour as a result
of viewing activity equivalent calorie information,
including choosing healthier products, eating smaller
portions or doing more physical exercise, all of
which could help counter obesity. (BMJ)
Label food with 'activity
equivalent' calorie info'
YOUR DAILY HEALTH
News and Advice
Abortion activist: I'll still help Northern Irish women buy pills
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