Scottish Green MSP challenges anti-choice protesters to think again

Anti-choice protests outside hospitals are having a terrible toll on service users and staff.

Anti-choice protesters targeting abortion service providers must think about the terrible toll they are having on service users and staff, says Scottish Green MSP Gillian Mackay.

Ms Mackay was speaking ahead of today’s evidence session for her Bill, which will create 200 metre safe access zones, or ‘buffer zones’ to stop the intimidating protests.

The session will hear evidence from groups who are opposed to the Bill and the protections it would offer.

Ms Mackay said: “Over the last fortnight the committee has heard from pro-choice campaigners and medical experts who have supported my Bill. 

“They have spoken very powerfully and movingly about the terrible toll these protests have on service users and staff, and the urgent need for safe access zones.

“As it is my Bill, I won’t be able to contribute to today's session but my position is clear. 

“My heart and my solidarity is with the people who are being forced to pass a gauntlet of placards and banners.

“The protesters know about the impact that they are having. They know that people feel judged, intimidated and harassed. Do they not care that they are making so many people feel this way? 

“They have seen all of the same testimonies and evidence that I have. Nobody should have to go through that to access healthcare. I urge all of the protesters to consider their own roles and the awful impact of their words and their banners.

“They can protest outside our parliament by all means, but to knowingly target people who are often in a vulnerable place is utterly wrong, and I am determined that my Bill will put a stop to it.”

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